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Katherine and Johnny:
Quasi una fantasia
Katherine and Johnny:
Quasi una fantasia
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                     by David Nunes da Silva... 
1968.    San Francisco.
  

SIR
ANDREW
And I think I have the back-trick simply as strong as any man in Illyria.

SIR TOBY
BELCH
 Wherefore are these things hid?
Wherefore have these gifts a curtain before 'em?
         Are they like to take dust,
                 like Mistress Mall's picture?
Why dost thou not go to church in a galliard?
   and come home in a coranto?
       my very walk should be a jig;
            I would not so much as make water
                  but in a cinquepace.
What dost thou mean?
        is it a world to hide virtues in?
  to home page David Nunes da Silva
 
 e-mail me  

         
   I.   ARIA: soprano 
"That's  enough, Johnny, I want to listen." 

The young man wore a fake army uniform, with a peace sign on his cap instead of an eagle.  He had a dreadful American accent.   The public address system squawked and reverberated, and his voice raised when he got excited, and it made the P.A. system howl.   "General Westmoreland has announced a new campaign of using napalmYAWWAAWH - I said napalm - to clear the jungles.  What does that really meaEEYAWWHEE.   On this Memorial Day, we need to remember that our soldierEEEYEE ..." 

"Ouch!"

Johnny had pinched her again.

She slapped him, and he grinned.  But she couldn't not look at him.  He had taken his shirt off and she couldn't get enough of looking at his chest, and he was quite aware she was looking.   He pinched one of his titties with his fingernails, making himself wince, and he pinched her at the same time - not on her jugs, because of her bra, but as close as he could get.   She pulled his hand out from her blouse, and she didn't let go of it, but held it quite tight, as she looked back at the speaker.   But as she listened to the booming voice, she heard the sound of a zipper being pulled down.   She tried not to look.   She stared straight ahead.  But somehow her eyes flickered over to him - there was nothing to see, just a wark of his white American knickers pushing out of his trousers.   He was trying to undo his belt with his left hand.   People were starting to look at them.

"Can't you cats listen?"

It was a big black man with about a bushel of kinky hair.   Katherine felt like she wanted to die.   She let go of Johnny's hand and sat up, listening to some Bolshie talk about the Democratic Party.  That was like Labour, and the Tories were called Republicans.  There was someone called McCarthy and someone called Humphrey, and something called primaries.   It was all very complicated - even the Americans didn't seem to understand it.  She didn't pay attention to Johnny.   So it was quite a shock.   He was stark naked, and his tadger didn't look like the diagrams in the book, not at all.

"Cool,"

a long-haired man said, passing a hand-rolled cigarette.   Katherine knew what it was, of course.   Everyone knew about pot.   Katherine sucked deep.   No one seemed to care that there was a naked young man lying on the grass.   But if Johnny started wanking in the middle of this crowd, she really would die.   He had his hand on it.  She reached over and pinched his titty.   She needed to get his mind off his tadger and back on her chebs.   But she couldn't stop staring.  Without really meaning to, she reached over and pulled on his tip, and fingered one of his balls inside of the soft crepe pouch.   They were like soft-boiled eggs.   But his tadger wasn't soft any more.

A little girl came by, handing out flowers.   "That man's bare," she said solemnly to Katherine.   "I can see his bottom."daisy

"He will be all right.   I'll make sure he doesn't catch cold."

The little girl frowned, puzzled.   "I like the way you talk." she said.   Then she gave a daisy to the black man, and went along her way.

"You shall have a skelpin' for lollin' about in the scud, Johnny," Katherine whispered.   She undid the buttons of her skirt.   But she didn't take it off.

"What's it like, getting a licking?" Johnny asked.  He was shy, suddenly, and he looked about to see if people were looking at him.   They were ; a naked man had not drawn stares, but a naked man with a stonner, and a Scots girl with her fingers on his balls, were very much the center of attention.   Johnny blushed and put his hands in front of himself, and then pulled them away and tried to look as if it was fine, as if it was the most natural thing in the world, lyin' around in the scud wi' a stonner like a cudgel on him.

"Kath, I want to know.   Does a licking really hurt?   Is it like unbearable?"

"Aw it's worth it for a keek at your tadger, Johnny."

"You mean you'll get a lickin' if your dad finds out you saw me naked?"

"I'll get a thrashing when I get home - no if.   Home by four I'm supposed to be.  If he finds out I was here - and with a boy - O my God.  I don't know what he'll do.  And ye in the scud!  He willna belt me.  He'll just murder me."

"Let's go then.  We can get to your place by quarter to five.  That's only a little late."

"No Johnny.  Pull my knickers off."

"But your lickin' - we'll be late."

"I'm getting licks.  I might as well get them for something."

"SHUSH!"

It was the black man.   Katherine looked straight ahead at the speaker, but she didn't hear a word he said.   Johnny sulked.   But Katherine pinched him, and pointed to her dress, and put her finger to her lips.   With a fat grin on his face Johnny put a hand up her dress, and she lifted her arse off the ground.   He didna tug at her knickers, but slid his hand inside them, cupping her cheek.  Then he gave her a really hard pinch, right on the edge of her crack just by her hole.  It made her shudder.   He slid his fingers up her crack, and yanked the waistband.  He was taking his time and she was getting tired of holding her arse off the ground.  Johnny was finding it hard to get the knickers down, it seemed - his fingers were getting into all sorts of wrong places.   He pinched hard on her arse, but when he fingered her place he was light as a feather.   It was nice.   Was that the way boys did it?    She knew boys wanked but she didn't know how - was it like this, just brushing lightly?   Did they just brush their tadgers with the tips of their fingers?  Didn't he know that girls needed it harder?

Johnny pulled her knickers off, over her shoes, and he put them on his face.

The long-haired man, who had thought it was groovy when Johnny got naked, didn't seem to think this was groovy.   There was a family sitting behind them - Katherine felt the parents eyes glaring, but didn't dare turn around.   Johnny slid up beside her to whisper in her ear, with a smug look on his face.   She giggled inside - she knew what he was going to say : they should go to the bushes and - and .... But he didn't say that.

"I want to take your licking for you.   Do you think your dad would let me?"

"Johnny - he doesn't know about you.  I'm not supposed to know any boys.   Go back to doing what you were doing."PEACE

"LADIES AND GENTLEMEN - EARTHA KITT!"

The crowd rose to its feet.    This was their chance, and Johnny made a run for it, carrying only his boots. Katherine grabbed his shirt and trousers.   The crowd applauded for a long time, but Johnny and Katherine made it only part of the way to the edge of the crowd before people sat down again, and it was no longer possible to move, without stepping over them.   People yelled "down in front!", but there was nowhere to sit, so they had to keep going.

The singer's deep voice boomed, and echoed - but you couldn't make out the words over the bad P.A. system - something about Santa Claus.   Katherine watched Johnny's arse as he stepped over people, a few steps ahead of her.   It wasn't like the statues in the park, or like the pictures she had found in books.   Watching an arse that moved was nothing like looking at a picture.   Katherine noticed that Johnny had a scar - several really, across both cheeks.  Her own arse was on fire - his hard pinches still tingled.   She wanted to get her hands on his arse, to pinch him all over, as hard as he'd pinched her.   She looked ahead to see how far they had to go.   They were almost at the trees.  There would be bushes to hide in under those trees.

"Get your balls out of my face, kid!"

Johnny was stepping across the legs of a man in a black leather jacket.  This crowd wasn't like the hippies near the bandstand.   They looked like nastie boys from the Gorbals.   There might be a riot, and these boys were looking to start one.   If they fought with Johnny - it wouldn't be a fight.

"Awa an' bile yer heid," Katherine said, in her broadest Scots.

The nastie boys turned to look at her.  Johnny kept on going.  She felt bare, without her knickers, and with her skirt buttons undone.  Walking after a naked boy, carrying his clothes.  What would people think?   Johnny, who was a few steps ahead now, turned back to look.  She said "pardon" to the man in the leather jacket, but as she stepped across his legs, he reached up under her skirt.  When he stuck his fingers up her pisshole he wasn't gentle.   

"I'll get some too, bitch!   Want to see a real cock?"   He reached for the zipper of his leather trousers.

Katherine stepped over the man and kept going, pulling herself off of his hand.  It hurt.   But she kept going.  The man didn't get up.   Johnny looked like he was ready to start a fight.

She kissed him.

"Git awa wi ye, Johnny, don' get yeself killt."

Johnny grabbed for his trousers, but Katherine wouldn't let go.  He turned away from her, and stomped off.   People got out of his way.    Katherine followed after.   Even his arse looked angry, clenched tight.   At last they reached the edge of the crowd - there was a little space.   Johnny put his hand out for his clothes.

Katherine shook her head, and headed for the trees.

"We need to go.   Let me have my pants."

As soon as she stopped walking, her skirt, which she hadn't rebuttoned, slid over her skinny bottom and dropped to the ground.   It had been just luck it hadn't happened in the middle of the crowd.   Johnny grabbed his trousers from her limp hands.

"Johnny, what's wrong with you?"   He was pulling his trousers up.

"You need to get home.  You don't want to get a licking."

"This is what I want."   Katherine grabbed at his tadger through the wark of his trousers.

"You want to?   Here?"   There was nowhere to lie down; no privacy.   "What about - you know - a baby?"

"We don't have to do that.   Do you want to lick my fanny?"

"No.   Yes."   Johnny began to lick her arse.   Katherine bent over and spread her legs apart, but he kept licking the cheeks of her arse.   "What are you doing, Johnny?"

"Licking your fanny."

Katherine turned around, and pushed his chestnut head into her crotch.  "This is my fanny, Johnny."

Johnny licked, and licked.   It didn't make her tingle.  When Johnny pinched her arse, he pinched hard, but he licked like a butterfly's wing.   That awful man - sticking his fingers in, hurting her.   But it made her feel hot.   She was hot for Johnny's tadger now.   She was going to have it.  She didn't care that people could see them.  She didn't care about the thrashing she'd get for being late.   She didn't care about anything.  She pushed Johnny's head away, and pointed at his buckle - he stood up and undid his belt and let his trousers drop to the ground.   His tadger had gone soft - while licking her fanny!   She sucked it into her mouth and gave it a good bite, and began to work it over with her teeth and tongue, with her eyes closed.   She grabbed his balls and started to work the lovely soft eggs, pinching them so they skitted away, inside their soft bag.   The flesh pushing and swelling and hardening into the back of her throat seemed huge - she could taste his beating heart, pulsing and salty and alive.

"I think you saved my life back there, with that biker."

"I can't talk and do - what I was doing - at the same time, Johnny."

"I wanted to fight him, when he grabbed your cunt, but you stopped me.   You kissed me.   Katherine?"

"Yes?"

"Can we kiss again?"

He didn't wait for an answer.   His kiss was firm, but brief.  He pulled back a few inches, holding her tight, and looked deep into her face.  "What makes you so grown-up?" he asked.

"Johnny, you do wank, don't you?  You know, mas-tur-bate?    Don't you want me wank you?   I could use my hand, if you don't like - squirting your juice - into my mouth."

"You didn't get angry at that biker.  You saw I was angry and you kissed me to stop me fighting.   It's like I'm a little kid and you're the grown-up.   Do you think its having your dad around that's made you so mature?"

"Having Daddie on the dole has made me poor, is what it's made me.  I'd like to see less of him - and his belt.  Johnny - I'm getting a thrashing for being here - I want it to be good.   Can you give me a, um, wank?  Like I do in my bed?"

"My dad's never around.  You don't know what it's like."

"Do you want to see my chebs, Johnny?"   Johnny nodded.   Katherine had no chebs.  Her bra was stuffed with toilet paper.  But Johnny was always looking at it - always pawing at it.   She unbuttoned her blouse, and unclipped the bra.   She looked at his face, steeling herself for his disappointment.

Johnny knelt.   He kissed her fanny - her cunt, he called it - like an R.C. kissing the cross.   Then he kissed each jug.   Then he kissed her mouth.   This time he kissed for a very long time.

There was the sound of clapping.   Katherine opened her eyes.  A hippie with flowers in his long hair was applauding them - and a hippie girl, embarrassed, was tugging at his jacket, trying to get him to come away.   But the hippie unbuckled his belt and dropped his trousers.   He wasn't wearing any knickers.    Katherine hadn't realized that pubic hair could be straight.   Or that tadgers could be that long.

"This is a private party, man,"  Johnny said.

"Groovy.   It's just so groovy to be naked, man.  It's like, natural.   Clothes are just a hang-up."

Johnny turned back to look at her face.  "You are so amazing, Katherine.  I - I love you!"

His tadger was soft again.   Katherine decided it was a lost cause.


       
     TOP       II.  GAVOTTE: tenor 
They caught the N-Judah streetcar.

They passed Johnny's stop, but he didn't get off.   A block before her stop, he said: "Katherine, um,  ..."    She couldn't think of anything to say either.   They got off the trolley together.  Johnny crossed the street to catch a bus, and Katherine began the climb up the hill.   Daddie would be home.   She'd get the licks as soon as she walked in, bent over the table in front of the TV.  She wasn't very late.  But it didn't matter how late she was; what mattered was how drunk Daddie was.

"Who was that boy?"beercan

It was Daddie, behind her.   She waited for him to catch up.  He had a grocery bag in his arm - a pack of beer.  He must have been in the corner store, looking out the window, when she and Johnny got off the trolley together.   It wasn't Daddie's usual store, because it wasn't the cheapest, but the Korean family who owned it stayed open even on Memorial Day.  It was lucky she and Johnny had been too angry to kiss.

"He's a boy from school.   I don't really know him."

"Well I don't want you hanging around boys.   Especially not no greasy dagos!"

"His father is George Nunes, Daddie.   You know, Nunes Buick.   Those adverts on the radio.  He's the man the mayor keeps putting on committees - the man they call the king of downtown.   Or they did - I read ye in the news abou' the strike at Nunes Buick - all those cars what had their tires slashed?"

"He's a dago, ye wee hizzy!"   Daddie was yelling at her about being with a boy, but not for being late.   She realized he didn't have his watch ; he must not know how late she was.   But when they got home he'd look at the parlor clock - if he hadn't pawned that too, and then he'd give her a licking - with extra because a boy got off the bus with her.

"Mr. Ramsay, Sir?"

It was Johnny, out of breath from running up the hill.  

"Mr. Ramsay, I made Katherine late.   She helped me with my homework in the library.   I didn't know she'd get a licking for it.   Mr. Ramsay, um, I, um - can I take Katherine's licking for her?   Please - um, Sir?   I don't know what I'd do if she got a licking and it was my fault.  It wasn't her fault at all."

Daddie tried to read the time on Johnny's watch.  

"Katherine's not supposed to be helping boys with their prep.    And I'll thank you to keep away from her!"    Daddie turned to go, dragging Katherine roughly by the wrist.

"Mr. Ramsay, sir?"

Johnny knelt on the pavement.   Daddie drew himself up to his full height of four feet, seven and a half inches.   With the boy - the son of the uncrowned king of downtown - kneeling below him, instead of towering above him, he was a different man.

"Please sir, please."    Johnny bowed his head.   His lips were moving, silently.   His hand moved to his chest, but he stopped himself before making the sign of the cross.   He was praying to God to be whipped instead of her.

"Ah, well . . ."    Daddie clenched his hand, and moved it up and down.    Katherine knew that George Nunes often had business dinners at the St. Francis, and Daddie must have opened doors for him and his rich friends, hoping for a tip.   The temptation to whip the man's son was too strong.   "You shall have half of Katherine's punishment, boy."

Johnny gulped, and sagged.   Now that he had his wish, he looked like a trapped animal.  His eyes darted about, looking for an escape.   But there was no escape.   He rose to his feet slowly, with an effort, as if his arms and legs had turned to water.   They silently climbed the rest of the way up the steep hill and up the stairs of the old wooden house, to the small illegal flat where the Ramsay family lived.   When they got inside the door, Daddie looked at the clock.   It was five fifteen.

"It's six o'clock, hizzie!   It's good for yer erse ye have a boy to take half the licks."

Daddie wasn't looking at her, so Katherine quickly pulled her dress down, hoping Daddie wouldn't notice that she didn't have her knickers on.    She bent and put her hands on the table.

"Hizzie!   Showing yer erse to a boy.  I'd have whipped you on your knickers."

"Well, he's seen it now, Daddie.   Go on and whip me bare."

Johnny said, "Mr. Ramsay, sir?   Before you whip her, when she was helping me with my homework - well I had turned it in without finishing it, and she said I ... that I should get a licking for that.   That she'd get a licking if she did something like that, and ....   Um, would you be willing to give me a licking for that?  Sir?"

"Won't you get licks from your own Daddie?"

"No, Sir.   I've never had a licking.   I've never had a spanking.   My Dad doesn't care what grades I get."

"Ye poor soul."

"And please Sir, can you not whip Katherine at all?  Let me have all of it?"

"Och, aye, ye'll have your way of it."

Johnny walked over to the table, smirking.  "Put your skirt on, Kath.  You're not getting a whipping."   Katherine was still bent over, and she said: "You have to look at the wall, Johnny."    Johnny turned around, and Katherine grabbed her skirt and went into the kitchen.   When she came back Johnny was bent over with his trousers down.

"Where's yer knickers, boy?"

"Portuguese men don't wear underpants, Sir."

"That's very uncivilized.   Ye should wear knickers."    Daddie took off his belt.

Katherine said: "Daddie, give him a spanking first."

"Aye."  Daddie hung his belt around Johnny's neck, and smacked the boy's arse with his hand as hard as he could.   Johnny let out a yelp.  Daddie kept smacking the same cheek.   Johnny gripped the table.   His jaw was quivering.    Then Daddie shifted his position, and gave the other cheek its turn.   Then he waited.   Johnny was almost sobbing, his breath ragged, and his whole body was stiff with fear.   When his eyes strayed to the belt-ends, hanging below his face, he flinched - and Katherine knew he was smelling it too.  She had spent a lot of time bent over that table, with the belt around her neck, waiting.  He was more scared because he didn't know what was coming.  But as the time passed, he slowly relaxed.   Then Daddie took the belt from his neck.

Johnny sobbed when the folded belt smacked across his arse.   Five more times it came down, and Johnny made the same noise each time.   He looked down at the table, no longer looking at Katherine.     Katherine was ashamed of the beer-stained, beat up table.   It came from the Salvation Army shop, like all the furniture.   There was washing hung up to dry.  Johnny lived in a mansion.   His shoes must cost more than her Daddie made in a month.

Katherine waited for the second set of six to start.   Twelve was the least she'd ever got for being home late.   But being late with a boy would be more.

"Ye took it well, boy." her Daddie said.

Johnny looked up.   "Kath, could you please turn around?"    When she turned back around he had his trousers up.

"Sit down, John.   That's your name, is it, John?"

"João," actually. "João Maria.   They call me Johnny."

Daddie took a can of beer from his grocery bag.   He looked in the bag, thinking.   Then he took out another can and handed it to Johnny.  They looked around for the can opener.  Katherine found it.    She hadn't been invited to sit down, so she busied herself, tidying up - she wished she could have done it before Johnny saw the pigsty she lived in.  She listened to them talk.

Daddie said: "I've heard of some Frenchies called Jean-Marie."     He pronounced it "Jeen-Merry."    Katherine said "Zhawhn-Mahree," under her breath.   Really her Daddie was more embarrassing than the furniture.

Daddie said: "Do the boys at school chuffle ye?  Call ye 'Mistress Mary'?"

"It's worse than that, Sir.   My real middle name is Maria de Fatima.   My aunt had a dream, the night I was born."

"Ah.   Well I suppose that's Roman, pay attention to dreams and such-like."

"Yes, Sir.   Thank you for the licking.   I'll never do anything to make Katherine late again.  ...  Sir."

"Aye.   Well, Johnny, what do you think of these hippies and all these riots."

"I think we have to fight the communists, Sir.   I think we have to fight Reds everywhere, including here.  My Dad got a threatening letter, and I bet it came from the Reds.  But I'm not sure we're fighting the right way in Viet Nam.   I think that's why England isn't helping us, Sir."

"You think we need to invade the Commies - like D-day?"

"Maybe, Sir.   I might be drafted.   I might be part of it.   I don't feel like I'm ready for that yet.  I'm just a kid."

"The army'll make a man of ye."

"I'd like to be a man before I go in, Sir.   That's why ...   Sir, can I come talk to you?   And if I do anything that's like a little kid - anything you'd give Katherine a licking for, could you give me a licking?   Please, Sir?"

"You can come see me, Johnny."

"Thanks, ... um,  Dad."

Katherine's Daddie put on his bell-hop's uniform. beer cans He had the night shift on Thursdays.   She had told Johnny that her Daddie worked at the St. Francis, but not what he did.   Well no, she had told him - she had just lied about it.   As soon as Daddie was gone, Johnny would say.  "I thought you said he was the manager?"   The door closed.   Katherine braced herself for the question.

"Your Dad is so cool!"

Katherine finished tidying up.   Johnny's beercan was full to the top.   He had just pretended to drink it.


         
       TOP       III.   DESCANT: soprano 
Katherine  took off her skirt: she still had no knickers on.    She put her hand on Johnny's belt buckle.    

"Doesn't it matter that I took your licking for you - that I love you?"

"Johnny, it was very fine, what you did."

"So why are you mad?"

"I'm not mad."

"Why did you tell your Dad to give me a spanking?   It really hurt.   And that waiting for the belting to start, with the belt around my neck - that was the worst.   The belting wasn't so bad - not as bad as waiting for it to start."

"You really have never had a licking.   The spanking is a warm-up.   A belting hurts like ten kinds of fire without a warm-up - you wouldn't say it wasn't so bad, if you'd gotten it without the spanking first.  Dad went easy on you, giving you a spanking.   And he only gave you six."

"Only six?   Only six?   What do you usually get?"

"Thirty."

"O, God."

Katherine took off her blouse, and her bra, and she undid Johnny's buckle and pulled down his trousers.    She started to undo his shirt buttons, but he shooed away her hands and did it himself.    Katherine went to the desk and took a little box out of the drawer, the kind prescriptions come in; it was labeled "prophylactics."    She took out a little packet the size of a teabag. condom package She asked Johnny if he knew what it was.

"I know what it is.  I know how to put one on, I think.   I've never actually seen one."

"I want you to masturbate me with your hand first."

Johnny hugged her, and kissed her eyes.   He knelt down, and looked into her fanny - her cunt.   He began to brush it very softly with his fingertips.   It felt nice, but she said: "Rub harder."

Katherine got down on the rug, and took Johnny's hand in her own, began to guide his fingers.   She said: "Since I started doing this, every single time, I've thought about you, Johnny.    You were going with Betsy Azerkarian then.   I never thought it could come true, that you would - that I'd really have you.   It was like hoping for the moon, to hope for you."

"Betsy Azerkarian is a spoiled brat!   I hate her!"

"You know what they say in school."

"What?"

"Johnny wanted to take a gal's cherry on,
so he went with the gal Azerkarian.
     But she said 'lots o' luck'
      when he asked for a fuck,
so he's humping a Scots Presbyterian."
"But that's not true - Betsy fucks - uh - we - "

"Johnny, it's fine.   I didn't think you were a virgin.    So you were lying, when you said you had never seen a rubber johnnie?"

"No - I pulled out.   I finished with my hand.   I tried to buy some, in a dirty little pharmacy in Daly City - but even there they wouldn't sell them to me."

"Och Johnny!   Betsy let's you fuck her, just once, and you dump her.   And then you go after the most conservative girl in the school.    But I'm a hussy too - just like Betsy.  You wanted someone who would say no."

"No it's not like that! - I want to fuck you!"

"Ouch - that hurt!"

"Sorry, I wasn't paying attention."

"That's what hurts, Johnny."

Johnny opened the packet, and began to wank his limp shaft.   "I'm going to fuck you, Katherine.   It may not be the best fuck, but we'll keep on doing it, and it will be better next time.   And the time after that.   Forever!  I think about you when I jerk off too.   I think about you all day long.  But when I imagine doing it with you, we don't - talk so much!"

Johnny wanked his tadger up, and put on the johnnie.   He started shoving in and out, very carefully, going a little further in each time.    There was no pain.  It was what she wanted most in the world, Johnny's tadger.   But she was too wound up, too excited.  It always felt tingly good, wanking, imagining it was Johnny's tadger.   It was her number one, sure fire way.   But she didn't feel that way now.    She didn't feel ... wicked enough.   When she was wanking, imagining it was Johnny, she always felt like such a bad little girl.

Johnny pumped and pumped.  Katherine relaxed a little.  And she looked at Johnny.  And she began to feel wonderful.   It wasn't like wanking at all.   She had Johnny and she wanted him - she wanted hugs and kisses.   He was having a good time.   It felt like Auld Lang Syne - like giving a New Year's present and knowing it was a really good one.  She didn't feel like sex.  Maybe later.  But she'd let Johnny finish.   What felt really good was knowing that he was having a good time, and she was giving ot to him.

Johnny was working hard, with his eyes closed, trying to shoot his juice by thinking about sexy things - sexier than where he was, what he was doing.   Thinking about Betsy Azerkarian's chebs, probably.    But it was working.   Slowly, but she could tell from his breath he was feeling something.    Katherine was glad for him, but she didn't feel sexy at all.

He was nearly there when the door opened.  Katherine's mither came in.

"Shame on you, Kath-i-kin," she said.  "Your boyfriend gets a belting and you don't put vaseline on his bum."


     
  TOP       IV.   ADAGIO SOSTENUTO: contralto 
"Glaiket  dunder-heids we been,"  Mrs. Ramsay muttered.

She went into the bathroom, and Johnny struggled to get into his pants.   He was starting to do his shirt buttons when she came out.  She sat down on the couch.

"Drap yer trousers, young man!"

Johnny couldn't believe she thought a spanking was anything like enough punishment.   He dropped his pants and bent over her knee.  Mrs. Ramsay was a big woman, with strong arms, but Johnny wasn't frightened.  It felt safe and comfortable on her soft fat lap.   It was like the hugs he used to get from Nana Rosalia, before his mother fired her.   The smell was the same - ammonia and hand lotion and fat female body.vaseline  Then she began to rub his bottom.    Her fingers soothed the welts and bruises.   It felt as good as kissing Kath.  He wanted the spanking to start.  A long hard spanking for breaking this woman's heart, fucking her daughter. But he heard the sound of a jar opening, and a big glob of cold vaseline was glopped onto his bottom, and rubbed around.   He wanted to feel it shoved into his asshole, like the time he got constipated and Nana Rosalia stuck her finger up his butt.   He remembered the smell of vaseline.  But she only rubbed it on his welts.  She gave him a couple of pats.

"Now, tell me what you're doing here, young man, fucking my daughter, with my man's belt-tracks across yer erse?"

Johnny stayed where he was.  He liked being there, bent over, looking at the rug, with his bare bottom under her hand.  His erection was rock hard and pushing into her apron.  He had almost exploded before she walked in the door, and now he was shoved between her thighs, his foreskin was pushed back, and the slightest motion scraped the burlap across his most sensitive spots.   If she spanked him he would squirt for certain - he couldn't imagine anything more embarrassing.  But he didn't want to stand up, it felt so good.  He squirmed a bit, working his raw tip against the raspy fabric.  She pinched her fat thighs together.  It was like super-masturbating, unbearably pleasurable.  Like jacking off with sandpaper - he could feel it coming - he was getting very near the screaming stage -

"Mom, I ...I mean, Mrs. Ramsay ..."

Katherine interrupted.   "He was wonderful, Mither.    He made me a bit late, and he knew I'd get licks, so he came here and begged Daddie that he could take them for me.   Begged on his knees!   And Daddie invited him to come back - to drop by anytime."

"You're not supposed to have a boyfriend."

"When Daddie went to work he left us both in the flat."

"Well.   Aye.   Well it seems you're a 'hit,' young man.   Are you good at maths."

"No."

"Here's an easy one.   I'm 32.   What does that mean?"

"I think you are a very good-looking woman."

"Liar.   Do you know your girlfriend's birthday?"

"April 4th."

"And she was?"

"Sixteen."

"And?"

"I don't know."

He got a smack on his bottom.   What was she getting at?   16?  32?  Birthdays?  Oh.   "When Katherine was born you were sixteen."

"And when I did - what you were doing?"

"Um, fifteen?"

"I had my wedding anniversary this year.  My 16th anniversary.   What does that mean?"

"That when you got married you were - um - I don't want to say it."

"Then don't do it!"   She spanked his greasy bottom very, very hard, about a dozen swats.

"We used a c-c-condom."condom

"I can see it.  You dropped it on the rug.   We used 'em too.   We used to wash 'em out and use them over again."

"I'm glad Katherine was born."

"Get off my lap, ye basturt!"

Johnny slid onto the floor, kicked out of paradise.   The spanking had felt so good.  He wanted more.   But he was glad he hadn't squirted all over Mom's apron.  Oh.  It seemed that he had.  Oh, well.  The after-spank giddy happiness was intoxicating.  Stronger than getting stoned.

"Listen young man, when I got a pudding I had to leave school.   I had to marry the shilpit wee basturt.   He's a drunk.   He gambles.  And he barely makes enough money to buy the belts he wears out on my erse!   You do that to my daughter I'll kill you!   I swear I'll kill you!"

"I won't!"

"I'm glad you say that, but I've been sixteen.   Take some johnnies.   Take the whole box of johnnies.   No, leave me one - that should last me for a month or two."

"If anything should happen, Mrs. Ramsay - not that it will, but if it did -  Katherine won't have to drop out of school.  I am just a kid, but I don't drink, I don't gamble.  And I would never, ever hit Kath.   I couldn't."

"Then ye're a blunt-heid.  And ba'less t'boot!   A man should be the master.   Katherine won't tell you any different.   And what are you going to do with a baby in school?   Money for nappies?   Don't think I'm raisin' a wee-un."

Katherine said "Mither, he's George Nunes's son.   Nunes Buick."

"So, you're a wally toff!   Think you have the money to buy a shag with a Scots girl!"

Johnny put his face into the musty carpet and his hands over his head and he groveled.  His pants were around his ankles and his greasy, welted bottom stuck high in the air.  She spanked it.

"Get out!   Get out!"

Johnny got out.   He didn't stand up until he was outside the door.   His pants came off as he was crawling across the floor, and the door closed behind him.   At least he had his shirt.   He tried to think of a way home where he wouldn't be seen by the other kids from school.


         
  TOP       V.  GIGUE: cello 
It was  hard to step out the door onto the street, bare.

And it didn't get easier.   His shirttails sort-of covered his ass and sort-of covered his dick, but anyone could see he was bare.  It wouldn't be long before someone called the cops.   He was going to tell them a story about initiation into a gang.   But he didn't think it was going to work.   If he was lucky, the cops might take him home, and not to jail, but his dad would still find out.   If only his dad wasn't so - so - if only he was cool like Katherine's dad.     His dad would scream bloody murder about the welts on his ass.   As if a bruised ass was such a big deal or something.

After walking two blocks in his shirttails on the streets of San Francisco, Johnny turned around and went back.   His bare feet were sore, anyway, after just a couple of blocks.  At the door, he got into his groveling position before knocking.  When the door opened it clonked him on the head.   He backed up on his elbows and knees.

"Please Mrs. Ramsay can I have my pants back?   I know I deserve to walk home naked but I'm afraid if my dad finds out that Mr. Ramsay belted me it might cause trouble."teacup

"I don't have your trousers, Mr. Nunes.  Katherine took them and went out after you."

"I'll go find her."

"No, you'll just miss each other.   Come in and sit down.  She'll come back when she doesn't find you.   I'll make us a spot of tea."

Johnny crawled in.   He didn't want to plop his greasy ass on the couch, so he knelt by the coffee table.   His tea was served in a beautiful, delicate china cup - she had one too but it had been broken and glued back together.   Katherine didn't come back.   Mrs. Ramsay offered him a biscuit.

"I should go look for her."

"Well you can't go like that.   None of Duncan's things will fit you.   And not Katherine's.   But I have a dress that might do - it hasn't fit me since I was eighteen but I still have it."

"Wearing a dress is as bad as going bare."

"It's plaid.  You can say it's your kilt - if you've picked up a bit of Scots."

"I don't want to get vaseline on your good dress."

"I'll clean you up."   And she went to the kitchen and poured water from the kettle on a rag.  "Hold your shirt up."

Johnny was still kneeling.   He felt like a baby getting his diaper changed.   The steaming hot rag stung like blazes, but as she rubbed his bottom it soothed the soreness.   Her chapped, calloused hand wasn't bothered by the heat of the rag.   His prick started to come up as she washed around his balls and washed the semen off his shaft.   Finally she washed his asshole, and his prick got really hard.  She gave it a playful slap with the rag.   He stared hungrily at her hand.  The skin on her knuckles was cracked and dry.

"See if you can fit that wullie into Katherine's knickers."   She took a pair of dark green panties from a drawer, and a plaid skirt from another one.  The panties were way too small, but he got them on.   Johnny had to press his shaft against his belly, with the bands of the panties and the skirt pressing across it.   But once his prick shrunk the skirt would fit well enough - Mrs. Ramsey must have been huge, even at 18.   But it didn't look like a kilt, it looked like something a Catholic school girl would wear. 

"Try Katherine's sweater."   She reached around him from behind to tie the sweater around his waist, her fingers brushing the tip of his prick where it stuck up above the waistband of the skirt.   With the sweater he looked, from a distance, to a blind man, as if he might be wearing a pair of dopey-looking plaid Bermuda shorts.    Close to, it looked like he was wearing a dress, and had a girl's sweater tied around his waist.    But he didn't think anyone would call the cops on him.   She slipped a pair of condoms in the dress pocket,  kissed his cheek, and shooed him out the door with a smack on his bottom.rowhouses

It was well over a mile from Katherine's house to Johnny's.   At one time, kids from most of the rich neighborhoods in San Francisco had gone to one high school, while several other high schools served the poor neighborhoods.  But a de-segregation plan had changed that.  There had been talk of sending Johnny to private school, but that would have been an embarrassment for his liberal father  -  to be part of 'white flight.'   So Johnny went to a public school in a poor neighborhood.  Although the plan existed to desegregate blacks and whites, there weren't a lot of blacks in Johnny's school - it was mostly the children of immigrants.   Johnny had walked into school that first day not knowing a soul, and he had a lot of trouble fitting in - especially in the clothes his mother made him wear.  And now he was walking through the neighborhood where the kids in his school lived.  His shortest route home from Kathrine's took Johnny through a slum; the old wooden houses in Katherine's neighborhood were at least painted; here there was broken glass, peeling paint, and burnt out buildings that hadn't been cleared away.  Used condoms and syringes.   Rats.  And, Johnny had heard, a lot of muggings.  The kids here, mostly Mexican, also went to Johnny's school.

"Hey, Johnny - cool dress!"

It was Mongi - Carlos Montoya - and a bunch of his gang, playing basketball.    They were tough kids and Johnny was afraid of them.   They tossed him the ball.   Johnny could never make a free throw, and didn't jump all that well, but when it came to slipping past guards and passing and receiving, he was the best there was.  He always knew what each player was doing - eyes in the back of his head, they called it.  There was no net - the hoop was an old washtub rim - and Johnny made the shot with an eye to getting possession of the ball when it came through - the most important skill in street basketball.   He jumped and batted the ball to Alejandro - so that made Alejandro his team.  Alejandro was a little guy and he knew better than to try a shot.   Johnny set it up, Alejandro got the message, and it was : pass, jump, shoot - two points!   Against six guards!   But of course he didn't recover the ball, and there was no way on earth two guys could stop six guys from scoring if they wanted to.   But when the ball came through that tiime, Alejandro was right under it, while Johnny blocked Mongi from moving in to pick up the ball.  Mongi didn't mind hurting people, playing ball, but he couldn't get past Johnny.  Johnny had planned the recovery from before the shot was made, and Alejandro was good at picking up his signals.   When the ball came through, Mongi jumped and batted it, but because of Alejando's interference, not in the right direction - and Johnny intercepted.   Johnny passed to Alejandro, with a toss of his head.   Johnny went in, took the pass, and faked going in for a jump - everyone blocked him - and then Johnny passed on a bounce, behind his back without looking, to the place he hoped Alejandro would be, the spot he had indicated with a nod.  Alejandro was there, and he had a clear shot.   Short, but smart - that was Alejandro.  But he missed - hit the washtub rim but it didn't go through.

Mongi said: "Oh, close!   Let's choose real teams."

"I got to go.   Say, have you guys seen Kath Ramsay?"

"Yeah - she was carrying your pants.   But she's cheating if she was supposed to wear 'em.   She had a dress on."

"Thanks, guys.   See you around."

"See you Johnny - love the green panties!"

Johnny picked up Katherine's pink sweater - which had a poodle on it - and tied it around his waist again.   He was about half a block away when Mongi shouted out:

"But Scotsmen don't wear anything under their kilts!"

The game had really beat up his bare feet.   But he put them down one after another, until he came to the dividing line between the poor neighborhood below, and the rich one on the top of the hill.   An expressway had been put in, cut into the hill, and the retaining wall was forty feet high - a Berlin Wall between two cities.   Johnny took the only way across, a pedestrian bridge that required a stair climb of over eighty feet.   The streets on the hill were narrow and winding; too steep for sidewalks, there were stairs instead.   The houses were small, except for Johnny's, and not very old; it was by no means the best address in the city.   Johnny's dad could have afforded more.  His mom had wanted to buy a famous old mansion on Pacific Heights.   But his dad had said:"I'm a fisherman's son, Marigold.   What do you think the neighbors are going to think of me in a place like that?"  The house that Johnny's father had built instead, was at the very top of the hill.

When he finished the long climb, Katherine was waiting in front of his house, red-eyed and puffy from crying.    Johnny caught her eye, and beckoned her - he didn't want to be seen in a dress, in front of his own house.  He changed in a secluded corner.  He took off the panties, which were ruined.  Katherine looked at his prick in a matter-of-fact way, and handed him his pants.  It was somehow far more intimate than the sexual way she had looked at him so far.  Like a wife looking at her husband.  Safe in his pants, he led his girl to the front door of his house.  He didn't use the servants' door, which he usually used to go in and out, because he was afraid Katherine would think he was ashamed of her, or something.   They went up the broad front stairs to the columned porch, and he opened the huge bronze-studded door with his key, and they went into the marble front hall.


           TOP       VI.   RONDEAU: soprano, tenor 
Johnny's  mansion was like the public library.

There were statues, although they weren't as nice as the Greek gods Katherine had studied for lessons in male anatomy.   One was a nude bronze man, but deformed and elongated, with a bent penis.  It was polished as if someone had been using it.   Johnny led her up the grand stairs.

"Oh there you are, John.  I didn't know you were home."

"Hi, Mom."

"And who is this beautiful lady?   Will you introduce us?"

Katherine blushed to the roots of her hair.   Besides her eyes, which must be a sight, her hair no doubt looked as if she'd been fucking in the shrubbery - since she had been, in the park.   Her clothes - well, in this place she would have been ashamed of her clothes, even if they had been clean.

"Miss Ramsay, this is Marigold Nunes my mother, and this is her friend Harriet Gallison.   Ladies, may I present Miss Katherine Ramsay.   Miss Ramsay arrived in this country from Glasgow last year."

"We are very pleased to have you here, Miss Ramsay."

"It is Mrs. Frank P. Gallison, actually, Miss Ramsay.   I had the pleasure to be in your country a few years ago, but I'm afraid I didn't get to Glasgow.  I'm sure I missed a wonderful city."

Katherine knew she was supposed to say something, but had no idea what to say.

Johnny's mother said: "I hope you will be honoring us at dinner, Miss Ramsay?"

Johnny gave her a ferocious pinch on the arse.  It made her yelp, and jump, and Mrs. Gallison was shocked.   Katherine said: "Yes, Ma'am," and curtseyed the way she had been taught in Scotland to curtsey to the Queen, should she ever need to.   Except she tripped.   She turned and ran up the grand staircase.   Johnny ran after.   She allowed him to catch her at the top of the stairs, and sank into his arms, sobbing again.

"Why on earth did you say you would go to dinner?   Didn't you understand I was trying to warn you?"

"You don't eat supper with your parents?"

"This is dinner with my parents, I mean just my mom, and about twenty other people.  Really boring old people."

"Well, I'm hungry."

Johnny led her by the hand, down a long hallway, and through a grand double door - into his parent's room, she assumed, since there was a massive four-poster bed.   But the clothes that were strewn on the oriental carpet were Johnny's.  He said, "Sorry about the mess, it's the maid's day off," and opened one of the closet doors.   It wasn't a closet but a kitchen, larger than the one she slept in.   He opened the fridge.   "I have plenty of food," he said.

"But don't you have to get back, Kath?   Won't you get a licking?   If you call and say you got invited to dinner, won't your mom and dad think we're just fucking somewhere?"

Katherine took a rubber johnnie out of her pocket.  "Mither gi'e me this, when I went ta look fer ye."

"That's incredible.   I thought your parents were strict."

"Daddie gave me a licking once, because I said Gary Grant was handsome.  I saw his picture in a magazine."

"When I was - um - fucking Betsy Azerkarian, I used to get home at four in the morning.   My parents didn't even care.   It was just her Pappa we had to worry about."

"Mither said we shouldn't to do - what you said - it in the park, though - she said that wasn't safe.   She said we could come home and use the kitchen, and she'd go out, so we could do, um - what you said.  So I won't get a licking if I don't come home for a few hours.  I don't have to go.   But if you want me to go, Johhny, tell me to go, and I'll go."

"I don't want you to go."

"You have my virginity, Johnny.   Or does it only count if you juice into me?   We can do that too."

Johnny said: "Come on!"    He was trying to sound masterful.   He led the way out into the hall, through a narrow door and up a rough wooden ladder to the attic.    Behind some boxes and furniture, under the low sloping roof, there was an army cot with a blanket.  Johnny pried up a board with his fingernails, and drew out his treasure, last year's school yearbook.   There was also a flashlight, and a red leatherette book with a gold crest, titled "R.C.M.P. - Weekly Calisthenics Diary."     The last thing he took out was a wooden board with one end whittled into a handle.

"This is where I have sex with you, Miss Ramsay.   Every night since before Thanksgiving.   Looking at your picture."

"You can use me any way you want, Johnny, and then dump me like you did Betsy.  I don't expect anything else."

"How can you think I don't want you?   How could I not want you?"

"I'm not very good looking.  I've got pimples."

Johnny handed her the book.   She opened to the first page:

My goals for the week of:    Nov      6  19  67  .
                 No P, no B, No dem!!!                .
              B on English paper (B+)              .
X      Ask K. if I can sit next to her at lunch.
                                                                    .
      Good [   ]     Passing [   ]     Failed [ X ]
  My plans for future improvement are:
                20 su, 20 pu, 20 s.         X     .
There was a small brown stain in the corner of the page, like a coffee stain, but sort of smudged.

Katherine asked: "What is 'No P. No B. No dem'?  And what is '20 su, 20 pu, 20 s'?"

"No pot, no booze.  No demerits at school.  If I break a goal I have to do twenty sit-ups, twenty push-ups."

"And '20 s'?"

Johnny pointed to the paddle.   "That week I swore I would talk to you, but I was too scared to do it.   So I got the punishment.   All the things I knew that I had to change - the drugs, the drinking - all that stuff.   I could fix that.  It wasn't so hard, not when I saw you every day, and knew what I was doing it for.  But actually talking to you!  For months I promised myself every day - today's the day.    And then, somehow, yesterday I asked you to the peace rally.  And somehow you said yes.   But this won't be a perfect week because we got our math tests back, and  I didn't do so well there.  Would you like to watch?"  He turned to the last filled-in page.

My goals for the week of:    May      27  19  68  .
         Ask K. to peace rally at Polo Grounds   .
           STOP BEING SO SHY WITH HER !!    .
          math test - 65                                         .
                                                                    .
      Good [   ]     Passing [   ]     Failed [   ]
  My plans for future improvement are:
                50 su, 50 pu, 50 s.                      .
Johnny put an X in the box marked 'Failed', and he put an X by "math test 65," and wrote (61) after it.   He said: "Ten of each, morning and evening, till they're done."   He did ten sit-ups, and ten push-ups.   Then he dropped his trousers, took the paddle, and lay on the floor on his left side, and delivered ten very hard swats to his right buttock.  Then he turned more on his belly, and gave ten more to his left buttock, although he could not manage the same force.

"Would you do it, Kath?    I can't get it to sting enough on that side."

Katherine took the paddle, and Johnny turned fully on his belly, with his hands under his chin and his big grin on his face.   Katherine gave his left cheek ten swats.   "Did that hurt enough?" she asked.

"Depends what you mean by enough."   His tadger had shot up, and he grabbed her and gave her a pythonlike hug and a very hard kiss.   He pulled down her dress, which hurt and popped one of the buttons.  He grabbed her arse, squeezing a cheek in each hand and sinking in his fingernails, and he rammed into her, smashing their bodies together.  It hurt horribly.  When he pulled out he reached in his pocket for a johnnie, but he fumbled it getting it out of the wrapper, and reached for another one.

Wrapped, he rammed into her again, staying inside for a long time until he pulled out, and took several very deep breaths before smashing in again.  His breath became very ragged, he began to pant, and then to scream - Yeyah, yeyah, yeyah, yeyah, ah, ah, ah, ah aaaaaaa.   And it was over.    Katherine had not enjoyed it.   There was blood all over the place.

"When do we have to be at dinner?" she asked.

"Katherine - don't talk about other things when were in the middle of having sex!"

"I thought you were finished."

"I had an orgasm, yes, but I'm not finished.    I can stay hard for a while, and keep fucking until you have an orgasm - haven't you read Masters and Johnson?"

"What's an orgasm?"

"It's - never mind.   Dinner is at eight, and it's about that now."

"We'd better go then - I said we would."

"Don't you need to do girl stuff - brush your hair, makeup?   Take a shower?"

"But we can't be late."

"Come on.   Don't put your dress back on.  You can walk around my house naked."

Johnny led her back to his bedroom.    "I told you not to put your dress on.   Strip!"

"But if we're late."

"You will do as I say."

"Or you'll take a slipper to me?" Katherine said, laughing.

"If I have to."   Johnny was taking off his clothes.    Since obviously they weren't going to dinner until he got dressed again, Katherine went along with it and took off her blouse and shoes.   Her dress she just let go - it was torn almost in half, and it just dropped to the floor.    Johnny marched her into his private bathroom, and they stepped into the bathtub, and Johnny ran the shower quite hot.shower

She really needed the shower, and so did he.   But before they had showered much Johnny reached up and unscrewed the shower head.   A jet of water shot down and pounded on the floor of the tub.   Johnny squatted down and slid his body under the pounding blast - it looked like it hurt.   He squirmed around until his belly was under it, and then he pulled his limp tadger into the path of the blast, wincing at the pain.   He gasped and writhed and shook and screamed.   And then he pulled himself out from under the shaft of pounding water.

"Pretty good isn't it, considering I came inside you just about a minute ago?   You try it."

"I don't want to."

"Kath!   Do you want me to get my belt?"

Actually, she did.   She was pretty sure Johnny would enjoy it.   

But he said: "You said - use me any way you want to.   Well right now I want to watch the water beating your cunt."

Obediently she stepped into the shower, and knelt down.  She timidly moved her fanny into the path of the torturing water.

About forty seconds later, Johnny said: "That, Miss Ramsay, is what Masters and Johnson call an orgasm.  You - get to have some more."


           
  TOP       VII.  CORO: bass e bariton
Katherine  wasn't thinking very clearly.   She was having her hair brushed.   Brushed and brushed.  She was in her grannie's kitchen in front of the fire.

Her grannie was putting her nappy on.  Pretty white nappy.  "Katherine.   Katherine!"

"Uhh.  Um.  Yes?"

"Which shirt do you want?"

Johnny was holding up two little boy's shirts.    She was in his bedroom - her grannie had been dead since she was six.   She felt all fuddled and her fannie was sore.   It must have been Johnny who had pulled up the boy's knickers she was wearing, while she had squirmed and fussed like a baby.   Grannie wouldn't have been so patient. 

"I nae wan' eyther damn shirt."    What a smacking Grannie would have given her for that.

"Your blouse has bloodstains on it," Johnny explained patiently.   "I guess we'll go with the plaid since you're Scotch."

"Scottish, not Scotch - and I'm nae snooly teuchter."

"The blue then.  It goes with the jeans."

Katherine submitted to the shirt and stepped into the jeans, which were too tight across her arse but had to be rolled up at the cuffs.   At least the shirt wasn't too tight across her chest.

"Ye can stop smirking at me, Johnny Nunes!"

He tried to keep his mouth firm but broke into giggles.   "No room for a bra in that shirt, Kath.  No room at all.  Let's try some jewelry.   At least that's something little boys don't wear."   He led her into his mother's room, and rummaged through her things.   He picked out a pearl necklace and put it over her head, and pulled her hair through.    She inhaled his masculine smell.  Somehow it was more male after the shower.    He noticed her sniffing him and took a whiff of her, and made a face.  "You need perfume, I guess."   He sniffed the stopper of a little glass bottle.  "This one's yucky so it's probably a good one."   He daubed the perfume on her chest - on what would have been her cleavage if she'd had any chebs - and he didn't do back up her buttons.   "Earrings? Here's a ring - see if that fits any of your fingers.    Here's a whatchamacallit - a brooch.  It's got pearls.   That'll do it.  Come on, Kath, we're late for dinner.  No time for your shoes."

People were eating soup.   Johnny made Katherine hold his arm as they walked in.   Everyone stopped eating to look at them.   They were quite a sight.   Johnny was in a tailored cream-color three-piece suit, with a red tie.   Immaculately combed.  She looked like a ten-year-old boy whose clothes didn't fit.  And Johnny had accidentally mussed up her hair, and wouldn't let her take time to fix it.   He hadn't given her a chance to button up her shirt, which was open down to her navel, and she couldn't do it with people staring at her.  Johnny's mother tapped on a glass.

"I think most of you know my son John.  This is Miss Katherine Ramsay from Scotland."

They sat down at places marked with their names, some distance apart.   The soup plates were taken away by the servants, but soup plates were brought in for her and Johnny, as if to shame them for being late.   The balding white-haired man next to her asked her what she thought of the riots.    She asked him if he thought they would effect the primaries, and if it would help or hurt McCarthy.   He began to talk very fast.  Katherine tried to eat her soup quickly; she didn't understand him anyway.   Then the man on the other side interrupted and started to talk about someone named Kennedy.     They began to shout.   Katherine found that by looking at one man, the other man would go quiet, and then the man who was talking, did not have to shout.   But it made it hard to finish her soup.

She asked the less ugly of the two men, how the American election system was different than the British.

"As you say, Miss Ramsay, the English system is far superior.  Under the American system, New Hampshire, one of the smallest states ..."  She did not listen to the rest.   She hadn't said the British system was better and she most certainly had not called it English.    A man on the other side of the table defended the American system.   Katherine turned to look at him, so he got a chance to talk for some time.

Katherine said: "So the voters of the Democracy party, are voting about who the candidate of the Democracy party should be?   I don't think Labour voters in Scotland are ever asked who the Labour candidate for Prime Minister should be.  That must be why American politicians are so much better looking.  Fancy anyone voting for Harold Wilson."

"Exactly, Miss Ramsay.   The only really fair system is the one they use in France - proportional representation."    This was a man who had left his place at the table to join the argument, and was leaning over Katherine's chair.   If she had any chebs she would suspect him of looking down her shirt at them.   The man touched her a bit, leaning over.  The man across the table interrupted, but she flashed her eyes at him, and he backed down.

Everyone at the table was looking at the man behind her.   All the men, anyway.  Perhaps the women weren't as interested in politics.   Johnny had his idiot smirk on his face again.

The fish was cleared away.  Katherine had only taken a bite, so the servants left her plate and brought more food, a huge steak with some sauce on it.  She was getting further behind and plates of food were piling up.  The man on her right dropped his serviette and was clumsy picking it up again, touching her bare foot all over as he felt for it.   She said she'd heard of Senator McCarthy in Scotland, but she was surprised he was running for president.

He started to talk about something called McCarthyism.   Katherine didn't understand a word, but people didn't interrupt him as much, so she had a chance to gulp down the salmon.

Then Johnny asked him if he really believed that Communism was less evil than McCarthyism.

Then the argument got really loud.   After asking his question, Johnny kept his mouth shut, mostly, only asking the occasional question, but the men were starting to shout, and to insult each other - and they seemed very angry about Johnny's questions.  Katherine cast a few sharp glances about, and quieted things down.   There was a man who hadn't spoken, across the table, but he seemed very interested.   He had been staring right at her.   She asked him if he was involved in politics.   He started talking, so she got a chance to eat a few bites of the steak.   The fish had been salty, but the wine was very good, and the servants kept filling her glass.

The man on her right leaned over and said: "Miss Ramsay, I'm appointing a committee on the subject of youth in politics.   I wonder if you'd be willing to help out the city.   You could come to my office."

"I'm afraid that won't be possible."

She wished she knew who that man was, but she couldn't see his place-card.   The man on her other side was called "The honorable Gaberton Gorman."   How odd for the son of an English baron to be in San Francisco.    The silly git was drunk.   When he saw she was looking at his card, he said, in an American accent:

There was a wee bonnie Scotch lass,
who had the most beautiful ass,
   not soft round and pink,
    as you probably think,
but gray with long ears and eats grass.
Katherine said: "Scots!   Not Scotch!"   He held out his wrist for a slap.   The man on her right shouted "Contest!    Contest!   The Scots Lass!   And no more oldies, Gorman!"

The first one, very quick, was from the man behind her.

Well, really, kind sir, you're a wanker.
If you tumble a lass you must thank her :
     if you plead with a lass
            for a piece of her ass,
it is common politeness to spank her.
He held out his wrist for a slap.   Katherine obliged, although she didn't see what he should be slapped for.   Then the man on her right, who had proposed the contest, produced:
Och aye that Yank lassie can blubber!
Ye'd think I'd attempted to club her ;
      I's writin' me Ma,
         an' misspelled "Skidddaw,"
so I asked if she carried a rubber.
He also reached out his wrist for a slap.   Katherine gave him a nice loud one.  Then the man across the table produced:
A bonnie young lass on Loch Linhe
says "I'll show you my knickers - a penny ;
        but don't pay the lad
            who is wearin' a plaid,
'cause under his dress there ain't any."
He reached across the table for his slap.   There was a wait, until finally the bald man at the foot of the table came over and recited:
She's sweet and she's smart and she's sassy,
     and happy to lick-y my ass-y,
          and when I want tail,
              she simply can't fail ;
for there's no one as pretty as - Lassie.
He put his hand on the back of her chair as he reached across her front, so she could slap him with her right hand.    Then Gaberton Gorman (hon.), stood up drunkenly and carefully pronounced:
On the yon bonnie banks o' the Orrin
The lasses wan' purfoom that's forren.
     When shagging a sheep,
        I just need to keep
a handful of grass in my sporran.
Johnny was still scribbling on a bit of paper.    But he waved to admit defeat - so they made him judge.    "What's the prize?" someone asked.   The proposer of the contest shouted: "The prize will be:
Three wanks,
or four spanks,
or two Yanks,
or just thanks."
The man behind her said: "Ooo - I know what I want.   Can I get them on the table?"

"The prize will be given on the table!    Clear space!   Clear some space!."

Johnny wanted to hear each limerick again.   He said: "They are all very good."    But that was greeted by booing and hissing.  So he said: "The two finalists are, Wanker and Loch Linhe!"

"All right!   Go wanker!   Go wanker!"

The proposer announced: "The two finalists will recite their entries on the table."

The wanker man shouted: "In the nude!" but the Loch Linhe man clambered onto the table fully dressed, and raised himself to his knees.  He recited his verse for the third time.  The wanker man had kicked off his shoes, and he climbed up and stood on the table, dropped his trousers, kicked them off, and knelt down.   In his socks and knickers, but wearing shirt, white tie, jacket, and cummerbund, he recited very loudly, and with grand gestures, miming "spank her" with a big smack with his mitt on an imaginary arse.   He was pretty well blootered, and he knocked over Katherine's wineglass.   The others made him get off the table until the winner was announced.

Johnny stood up.  "The winner is - Loch Linhe."

There was polite applause, and the winner stood up.  "I'm afraid I will have to take - just thanks."

The proposer shouted: "A kiss!   Thanks can be a kiss - on the table, Bishop!"

The Loch Linhe man climbed on the table again, and Katherine stood up and kissed his cheek.  Someone shouted "Three kisses." so she kissed his other cheek, and his forehead.   There was more applause.   Then the wanker man said - "Hey, I'm in second place.  Don't I get a consolation prize?   One spank?"   And without anyone agreeing, he climbed on the table, and pulled down his knickers.   He dropped face down on the table, flipping his coattails out of the way.

The proposer said, "You might as well give him a spank.   He'll stay up there if you don't."

Katherine leaned over and gave a buttock a mighty swat.   There were cheers.   Then she gave its brother the same medicine, and someone hissed.  "Hey, no fair - he was only supposed to get one.   I want one, if you're handing them out.  You could spank us all, if you get naked."

"But that was one spank," Katherine protested.  "When my daddie belts me, one lick is the belt hitting both cheeks.   So when he does it cross-wise, a hit on one cheek plus a hit on the other still counts as one lick.  Johnny counts the same way."

The man they called "Bishop" said: "Why that sounds like a cross-beltin'!   I haven't seen a proper cross-beltin' since I used to get them from my Pa.   There were a lots of Scots settled our part of the Carolinas.    Do you have marks from a belting on you now, Miss Ramsay?  Does Johnny whip your thighs too, with your legs apart, so the belt wraps around to the inside of your leg?   That hurts best of all; we called it white mountain lightning.  It sure made a man of you - or a woman."

"I don't have any marks.   I was supposed to get a licking today, but Johnny took it for me."

All the men were listening.  Someone said "Johnny's holding out on us!"   The bald man began to chant: "Oh! Johnny!   Oh! Johnny!   Take it down, Take it down! Take it down now!   Take off those beige pants!"  but Katherine held up her hand, and said "Don't make him pull his pants down in front of his mother."    The men hung their heads, and held out their wrists for slaps.   Katherine ignored them.

The beef was cleared away, mostly uneaten, at least by the men, and dessert was served.  The wanker man was still lying face down across the table.    The servants placed the little bowls and spoons on the table, working around him, and they spread a cloth over the spilled wine, and put another over his naked arse.  Along with the ice cream, cheese-boards with many kinds of cheese, all stinky, and tiny crackers in little baskets, were put on the table.  And many kinds of brightly colored drinks in crystal decanters.   Katherine sensed a different man standing behind her, and turned to look.   But she knew who it was before she looked; from a feeling in her chest.  It was Johnny.

"I shall be going to bed, Miss Ramsay, as it is a school night for me.  I wish you good night.    Good night, mother."    He walked out of the room.    No one else had left, and now Katherine didn't know how.    She didn't know the proper thing to say to her hostess.   Johnny's mother rescued her.

"Perhaps you will want to bid John a private goodnight, Miss Ramsay."

"Thank you, Mrs. Nunes.  I will."   She stood up and tried another curtsey.   She tripped again.

Johnny was waiting outside the door.   After a kiss, he said: "I thought you might be ready to escape - they're good for hours yet.  They're still only half plastered.   You were lucky.  You inspired a literary competition - more or less.  At the last party, they measured to see who had the longest dick - erect dick, of course, and masturbation was encouraged.  It wasn't me.  The winner of the jerk-off race chose to get fucked in the asshole with a bottle - but he didn't put that in his column!    A bottle of good, um, Scottish, isn't cheap.   We had to give it to the servants."

"Does your mother give parties like this often?"

"This one is quite a triumph for her.    You've heard that the teamsters are trying to organize Nunes Buick?   Well, she wasn't sure the mayor and all those politicians would come - not in San Francisco.   My Dad's on the liberal side in politics - so this strike has made him a pariah to his own allies.   But I when there's free steak available you can always get someone to tie on the feedbag."

"The Mayor!    The Lord Mayor of San Francisco?   Was I supposed to bow?   I'll make a right fool - how do I address the mayor, and which one is he?"   
I mun go back in, now, as I ha'e no said farewell ta yer mither!

"Just wait five seconds."

It was fifteen.   Johnny's mother dashed out, pulled Johnny out of the way by the back of his trousers, and took Katherine in her arms, and kissed her on both cheeks.

"Darling, I am so glad.   And what a triumph!   You must come to all my parties.  But John, why did you use your old clothes for her?   I have closets full of dresses.  Christian Dior.   And you could have brushed her hair!"

"Mothers don't understand sex appeal.  That's what makes them mothers."

"Mrs. Nunes, Ma'am.   I mun return your jewelry.   I hope it was all right for us - me - to borrow it?"

"Well I am very fond of the necklace.   But you must keep the pin, Katherine.  A little token."

"I couldna possibly."

"I insist."

"Here it is, Mrs. Nunes."

"Very well."   Mrs. Nunes's face lost it's big smile.

"And the ring."

"That ring, Miss Ramsay, does not belong to me.  I cannot accept it."

"Who does it belong to?"

"That ring was John's to give to whomever he wished.   If he has given it to you then I would say it belongs to you.   I must return to my guests."

And she turned on her heel and left them.    Johnny kissed Katherine again.

"It's much too late for you to go home.   We'll just have to find a bed for you here.  Let's see, whose bed - I mean what bed - would be best?  I just can't think."

"Johnny, I have to go home.   When Daddie comes home after work I have to be there."

"I'll wake the cook.   He can drive the caddy."

"Don't do that, he'll be exhausted.  I'll just walk."

Johnny said: "He's a servant."    Katherine was shocked.   But Johnny was quite polite to the man.  

"I'm really sorry about this, Numata.  Miss Ramsay has to go home - it's unexpected - a family obligation.        If there was any other way.    But of course it's not safe for her to walk, and you're the only one I can ask.   That was a great dinner, by the way."

When they got into the big black car in the garage, Johnny slipped into the back seat with her, and kissed her.    "This is going to sound awful, but I'm looking forward to jerking off - wanking - tonight.   I wish we were going to bed together, to cuddle in my big bed and for you to fall asleep in my arms.  But I don't think I would have been able to fuck any more.  I'm exhausted.   But jacking off - I can do that.  I can't wait to find out how much better thinking of fucking you is, now I have really done it.    I'm getting tight in my pants."   Johnny unzipped his pants.    It was dark in the back seat of the limousine, so Katherine didn't mind pawing around until she felt the stiff meat, and giving it a rub.   Not too much, since Johnny was a screamer.   But she wasn't going to say anything - not with a servant sitting in the front seat.    Johnny undid the zipper of her little-boy jeans, and reached in.  That opening they put in boys' knickers was so - handy.

But she was extremely embarassed, even as his light touch send shivers up her spine that made her hair stand on end.   "You better go, Johnny.   School tomorrow."

"Oh, fuck.   History homework. - can't do it.   Mom'll keep me talking for a while.   She heard you say I took a beating for you and she'll be very, very upset about that.   She can make me feel so small - and she's going to grill me something awful for that.  I forgot to tell you it was important not to tell my parents.   And she'll want to know all about you - I'll only give her my name rank and serial number, I swear it.    But I won't hit the sack 'til midnight, and I'll be crying; she makes me cry.  At least she used to; now I don't think I'll ever cry again.   I'll have a quick jerk so I can fall asleep then - I'm too keyed up to sleep, otherwise.   But I can't possibly do my homework tonight."

Johnny kissed her again.   But then she shoved him out the door.   He tapped on the driver's window.   "Walk her to the door of her apartment, Numata.   You carrying?"

"Of course, sir.   Are we expecting a problem?"

"Not tonight.   But keep a look-out.    Better to park a block away.  I don't want the neighbors to see the car."

"It is conspicuous, sir."

The cook drove very fast through the empty streets, and parked in front of a fire plug.   He wouldn't let her get out of the car until he said it was safe, and he kept one hand inside his jacket as he walked her to her flat.  When he left her at the door, Katherine opened it as quietly as possible, and tiptoed across the parlor.   Her mither was snoring deeply.   She had been drinking - Katherine could smell the cheap red wine.   Her Mither hated wine, but it was the cheapest way to get drunk in California.   She set the alarm - school tomorrow.   It was exactly midnight.  She slipped her fingers down to the top of her fanny.


               
  TOP       VIII.   RICERCAR MASTURBATA: duo percussio
Johnny  was dizzy with happiness.   The things he had wanted most in all the world had happened to him today.

The things she had wanted most in all the world had happened to her today.   And Katherine was sick with misery.

A hundred times, dreaming in his cot in the attic, he had kissed her.

Lying awake, on her pad on the kitchen floor - a hundred times he had kissed her,  in her mind -  thinking of him.

And running down the streets of the City.  Hand in hand and running down the streets of the City, in her mind.    In his mind, on the streets of the City.

A hundred times, lying on her mat, working her hand in her fanny, she had spoken the words "Johnny, I love you."   And a hundred times he had answered - in her dreams - in a hundred different ways.   That he should say "I love you" to her!  That was more than she had even dared to dream.  But when he said it today, all she could think about was Betsy Azerkarian's jugs.   She knew he had said "I love you" to Betsy too.  She just knew it.  Said it and taken her virginity and dumped her.   And now he had Katherine Ramsay's.  Who would be next?

She had such cool parents.  They really cared about her.   They had made her into such a wonderful person, in spite of never having had it easy.    They gave her discipline, and that gave her so much dignity.   She had maturity, self-discipline, and courage - she wasn't a goof-off and a screw-up    She was all the things he wanted to be.

His mother was so generous.    And she really loved Johnny.   She gave him so much.    He lived in a whole different world.   A world of openness, liberality, new ideas.  Not just money.  Style, poise, confidence.  He had all the things she wanted to have.   And money.   But none of it was for her.

In the park today, he had kissed her!   Naked together under the trees!   Such a thing was too wonderful to be true!

In the park today, naked together under the trees, he had kissed her.   But such a thing couldn't happen to her, not happen and be for real.

And running down the streets of the City.  Hand in hand and running down the streets of the City, in her mind.    In his mind, on the streets of the City.

He loved her so much, but he was so worthless compared with her.

He was worthless, but she was so in love with him! 

His prick - his tadger - was not coming up.   When he thought of her, there was so much to think about.  He was never going to get to sleep.   Jacking off was for when he was bored.    When a dick-head like him had a chance with a girl like her - it was too much - too - he just couldn't concentrate - he was never going to climax at this rate.

Every touch on her fanny - her cunt - sent shocks of pleasure into all her sexy places.  Her nipples pounded with it and her arse tingled.   Johnny told her the name for that, when it felt really, really good - what was that word he used?   Ursasum?  Something like that.   He would dump her in a week, perhaps a day - but he couldn't take tonight away.    He kissed her, as he had before.  He fucked her, as he had before, more times than she could count.  But this was not imagination any more, it was memory.   She had imagined his lips, his hand, his tadger - but she could not have imagined his desire, or the way it made her feel.

She was so sexy the way she talked.  "Aw it's worth it for a keek at your tadger, Johnny."   "You do wank, don't you Johnny."   Did he ever.   Wanking was such a sexy word.   Whoever decided to call it jacking off?    She was so sexy she could start a riot.  She had started a riot - if the table knives had been sharper at the dinner party, there would have been bloodshed.   The way she looked in that little boy shirt - and those jeans - holy fuck those little boy jeans - there can't have been a prick at the table that wasn't pounding.

She knew there was nothing sexy about her body.   When Johnny looked at her, his tadger simply wilted.  He could, just, squirt his juice inside of her, if he kept his eyes closed.   But one time tonight his voice had quivered with desire for her, and it had turned her inside out - when he had said: "Do you want me to get my belt?"   Her chebs were awful, but her arse was not bad; he liked to pinch her arse, and it was so sexy having it pinched, by him.  It's obvious he's really interested in whipping me.  Perhaps if he whips my arse red, and then fucks me from behind, he won't need to keep his eyes closed.   And spanking him with that paddle - wow!  He has absolutely the finest arse on the planet.   If I live to be a hundred I'll still be wanking with that memory.

She has absolutely the hottest teats on the planet.   It had been so funny to see Judge Hamilton go sprinting for the john - as if anyone would think he was going there to pee!   Johnny's pants made the sign of the tent, like every other pair of pants in the room, but she was so much more than that.   He wanted to kiss her, and just look at her.   To look at her and listen to her talk.  But most of all he wanted to cuddle with her, in the big down-feather bed that he hadn't slept in, not since his discipline program, not since he had set out to make himself good enough to ask her.

She had gone under the stream of water, willingly, joyfully, thinking it was torture.    When it didn't hurt, she had imagined a belting from Johnny.  That would make her skinny arse sexy for him, in spite of her flat chebs and bad skin.  And this was one imagination that she was going to make a memory - one thing she had to make sure they did, before he dumped her!  And when Johnny is fucking the next girl, and he closes his eyes, perhaps he will see Katherine Ramsay's arse, getting red and striped under his hand.

He had only wanted to show Kath how he masturbated, using the stream of water in the shower.  He had wanted to do something for her, so it wouldn't be all take and no give.   But he was such a screw-up.  When he tried to cajole her it came out all wrong.  He had almost started to cry - his voice had been shaking when he jokingly said "do you want me to get my belt?".

He was so sexy, no wonder he was a heart-breaker.   And she wasn't exactly complaining that he had dumped Betsy Azerkarian.

I love her so much, but I am so worthless compared with her!

He's worthless heartbreaker, but I'm so in love with him!

I'm too happy to think straight, but I need to.  Why am I fooling myself?   I said "I love you."   Did she say "I kind of like you"?  Did she say: "I don't utterly despise you"?  No, she didn't.

Johnny got 61 on that maths test.   Sixty-one.   Is that even possible?   Wouldn't you have to know all the right answers and pick the wrong ones on purpose?   Johnny's not going to work for NASA but he's not an idiot.   And that book!    Why does he do so badly, if he tries hard and he's not a tumshie-heid?  Perhaps, when he's between breaking hearts, he will let me help him with maths.  And when we walk to the library, if I touch his hand, perhaps he won't pull away.   It might take years, but I might, I just might, get him in the end.    If I don't have hope - if I don't believe that someday I will have Johnny - then just rubbing myself is never going to give me an ursasum.   Never again for as long as I live.

She is kind.   Maybe she'll let me sit next to her at lunch, even though she despises me.   And if I really, really, try, maybe I can spend a day with her again.  After years of trying, maybe she would go for a walk with me.   The thought of even touching her hand again makes my prick rise.   I guess having a climax tonight isn't going to be a problem after all.

And running down the streets of the City.  Hand in hand and running down the streets of the City, in his mind.    In her mind, on the streets of the City.


         
  TOP       IX.   BOURRÉE: tenor
Johnny knocked on the door, very lightly.   Nothing happened.

He sat down to wait.    Kath would need to leave for school in twenty minutes.  She should be awake, but her parents probably were not, and it seemed they slept in the main room.   So perhaps she heard his light tap, but could not answer.   He should not have come so soon - what was he thinking?  That she would want him there while she got dressed?    Walking to school with her was more than he had any right to ask for.

The misery settled on him.   Last night he had used up his remaining 40 spanks - they had eased the pain a little.   But he knew now that spanking himself was no substitute for being punished by someone who loved him.   But there was no such person.

He heard an alarm clock go off.   That must be Kath getting up, ten minutes before she would need to leave for school - she must dress quickly and skip breakfast.   He settled in to wait for her.   But he could not resist tapping on the door again.

Katherine opened the door and poked her head out, and when she saw it was him she came out into the landing, naked, with her clothes in her hands.  They looked at each other.   Not having her was more misery than he could bear.   She looked miserable as well.   Johnny looked at the floor as she dressed.

He had signed in blood that he would ask her.   "Katherine, may I walk to school with you?"

"If we're both go fro' here ta school, we'll be gang together, surely."

Well that was as much as he had expected.   Now for the hard part.  "Katherine, I did my history homework.   I couldn't sleep.   I know it is all wrong.   Do you suppose - do I have your permission - to ask your Dad to look at it?  To ask him to give me a ten licks for each wrong answer?"

"Did ye nae already gi'e yeself swats with yer paddle?"

"Your Dad's belt hurts more.    I tried a belt on my own ass, but I can't make it hurt - I don't have the courage, when it's just me.  But I know I have the courage to ask Daddy for sixty licks with his belt, as hard as he can give it to me.   That's why I can't do this on my own - I need to have a Daddy to punish me."

"But what have ye done to deserve sixty  licks."

"Sixty!  Kath, I've been bad all my life and I've never been spanked.  I must deserve sixty thousand licks, not sixty.   Your Daddy is so cool, I think he might give me some, and then it'll be like having a Dad."

"Johnnie, Daddie canna look o'er your prep, he canna but barely read.   He doesna e'en read the paper - I read it for him, and tell him if there be anything he needs know."

"I guess I didn't realize that.   My dad is the same.  Well, he can read OK.   His uncle kept him on the fishing boat until he was 17 - he's never gone to school at all, but they taught him a little in the Army before they sent him to Korea.  He keeps saying he'll go to school someday, but he's too busy for that.   He's too busy for a lot of things."

"Daddie could read your homework; he could sound out the words, slowly.   But he knows nothing about American history - nothing at all.  I doubt if he knows who's president."

"So I guess it won't work, then.   And there's nobody else.  Nobody who would even know the answers, except you of course."

"Do you want me to do it for ye, Johnny?    Do ye want me to read your homework, tell you yer mistakes, help with history?"

Johnny did not answer for some time.   He squeezed his fingernails into the back of his left hand.   "No, Kath.  Not help me.   Everyone helps me - but it doesn't help me.  You can't help me by teaching me history.  Mr. Reskin will read my homework when I hand it in and tell me my mistakes.   The answers are in the back of the book, anyway.   He's a very good teacher and he always has time, he's offered me special help.  But he can't help me.  No one can - Kath, I showed you my discipline book - I spank myself for every wrong answer, and my spanks really hurt.  But the spanks I give myself, don't hurt enough - I know that now, now that I know what a real belting feels like.  My spanks aren't so unbearably painful that they make me change.   I goof off, spank myself for it, and then goof off again.  I think the only thing that will change me is if someone who cares about me, will punish me.   I know we can't be together, when I'm such a shit-head and screw-up and you're you, but if only you cared about me a little, and could do that, then I might not be such a shit-head forever.   I know I have no right to ask."

Katherine fainted.   She toppled over like a bowling pin.

Johnny slapped her, something he'd seen in a movie.   She didn't say, thanks I needed that, but she did recover.   But it took a while ; Johnny was looking at his watch every few seconds.   When she was still a bit groggy, he said "We must leave now!  If we don't go now, this minute, we will be late.   We will get reported!"

And that word snapped her out of it - more than his slap.   Fully recovered, she ran down the stairs with him, and out the door and down the sidewalk - and then Johnny hit his stride - he was on the track team.   He found he had to hold back, to keep from sprinting away from her, so he took her hand, pulling enough to make her faster, without quite pulling her off her feet.   It was rough on her, but he didn't want to be the one who made Kath get a mark on her report card.

Her hand reminded him of something, but he couldn't tell what.   As if it had all happened before.   Or perhaps that it would happen again - running hand in hand, feet pounding the pavement.

Nothing matttered when he ran.    Nothing but his young body and the air he sucked into his lungs.  And a warm soft little hand in his.   That mattered a lot.

But they came, all too soon, to the school. They were late, only a minute late but late, and the hall monitor reported them both, which wasn't fair but there was nothing they could do about it.    That meant a bad conduct mark, an "8", on their next report cards.  They went to their separate classes.   Johnny tried to calculate how many strokes Kath would be whipped for the 8 on her report card, which was of course entirely his fault.   For his own 8 he would not be punished at all - except by himself.    No one at home would even read his report card.

In Johnny's elementary school, the parents, from the most liberal neighborhood of San Francisco, had not spanked their kids, but here, in this working-class school, where Johnny had been sent by the mysterious workings of the desegregation plan, every boy was spanked; or rather, they weren't spanked but got the belt.  George Azerkarian, the friend Johnny had made his first day in school, couldn't even put off his whipping until he got his report card; he had to show Pappa every homework paper and test, and a bad score, which in George's case was just about every week - meant a striped bare bottom, in the kitchen.    Johnny had watched, for the first of many times, his new friend get belted the first week of school.   Johnny had applied lotion to George's bottom, which George said was for sissies, but George's twin sister Betsy had kissed him for it--and that was the first of many times, as well.    

Girls weren't whipped as much - or at least if they were they kept quiet about it; the boys liked to talk, complaining--but really boasting, it seemed to Johnny--about how strict their parents were.  "I seen Billy get a lickin' and his ma just uses this little tiny strap that wouldn't hurt nobody and Billy was all cryin' and jumpin' and runnin' away."  "Yeah, well your dad don' give you mo' 'n one stroke for no 8 - my ma give me five!"    An "8" was a numbered paragraph on your report card, which merely said, "(8) Conduct could be better."   It was the mildest level of bad conduct mark.   Soft teachers, who would never have hit a child, passed out 8s like candy, not knowing or not caring that each one meant a striped bottom.   But the parents were angry at the school board for abolishing spanking in school, and the moms had decided their kids should be spanked more at home to make up for it.  A teacher's casual remark at a parent-teacher conference would be carefully weighed and discussed - in Armenian, Spanish, Tagalog, Russian, or Arabic, and the translation was always into strokes to the child's bottom.  At PTA meetings, the moms had agreed on what spanking was fair for every report card mark.  But then each mom thought that her own boy was precious and special - which meant she wanted him whipped twice that much!  

Boys were whipped in public.  George got his stripes in the Azerkarian kitchen, after school, at just the time when the old men of the neighborhood would drop in for Mamma's coffee and pakhlava - and in the middle of his thrashing George would have to politely greet each guest as "Uncle," and they would inspect his bottom and say in Armenian, "It is for your own good, young Kevork.   You are lucky to be in America - you'd get a real whipping in the old country!"  George hated being called "Kevork," almost as much as Betsy hated "Elmas".   Johnny asked George about the beltings.

"Doesn't it really hurt, your dad's belt?   You don't seem to mind it.   You don't cry."

"Why, does your dad spank harder?   I think it hurts, and it's so embarrassing getting the belt in the kitchen.   That's so gross, it's like my dad thinks he's still in Armenia, where they take baths in a tub in the kitchen.   Don't you and Betsy do that to your kids."

"I'm sorry I watched., Kevork"

"That's OK
Maria-de-Fatima, I don't mind you watching.   You want to try it?   I'd like to try your dad's strap too, to see if it's really worse than my dad's.  We can sneak in and borrow my dad's strap, so you can feel that, and then go over to your house and you can show me what a real American whipping is like."

"I'm sure you could take it better than me - you get whipped often enough.   I think your butt looks really cool - your dad makes the stripes like a fence.   But I don't want to whip you on top of what you just had."

"That was nothing.  I can take a whipping from you on top of this.  If you want a real show, come home with me when I get my report card.   This term it's going to be a doozy!"

But by the time report cards were passed out, in December, Johnny had already dumped Betsy, and he and George weren't friends any more.  So instead, he had gone home that day after school with his best friend Harry Insman, who had a good report card and wouldn't get whipped.   But as soon as they got home, Harry was called into Dad's study, and whipped t
en strokes on his bare ass with a strap that was 4 inches wide and thicker than a belt, just for a single bad-conduct mark. Johnny couldn't believe anyone would hit a child with something like that - it even had metal studs in it.   And that beating was for a single 8 on a good report card!  Harry's dad, a defense lawyer, wouldn't listen to Harry's side of the story, and the punishment was humiliation as well as terrible pain; he was made to strip naked in front of Johnny, for one thing, and Harry's little brother Marcus got to watch too, and he gloated and laughed.  Harry didn't make a sound, and his dad said he took it like a man - and even Marcus was impressed by that; he wanted to be a man, too.   So did Johnny. 

But afterwards, talking to Johnny in his room, Harry had cried like a baby - he said the 8 hadn't even been his fault.   He hated it most of all that little Marky had been allowed to watch and gloat - he said he hated Marky
for that.    And then Marky came in to Harry's room, still laughing and happy from the fun of watching his brother whipped, and wanted to play with the big kids.  Johnny was all smiles and he asked Marky if he wanted to pretend Johnny was his babysitter - "It's like playing house," Johnny explained.

"Playing house is my favoritest!   Are you going to be my babysitter for real tonight?   Could we play house tonight too?"

Mostly Johnny and Harry just ignored Marky.   But once, Johnny had made up the game of house as a trick - first he got Marky to agree to play house, and then told him he was the baby.   Marky had sassed back his "Daddy," and when Johnny had run after him, Johnny had slipped and fallen in the mud; Marky laughed, and kept laughing even when Johnny caught up with him and spanked his bare bottom on the playground in front of his friends.   Even while being spanked, Marky kept taunting Johnny, showing off to his friends he had the balls to do it.   Marky had come back to the house sore but triumphant, and since then he wanted to play house all the time.

But this time, Johnny said: "Marky, this is a real spanking, not play.   I'm mad at you for laughing and poking fun at Harry when he got whupped.   You shouldn't have made fun of him.   You understand?  So this will hurt."

Marky took his scolding with his eyes on the ground.   But when Johnny said: "pull down your pants," he acted like the punishment was over and it was time to play house.   He stripped naked, the way Harry had been made to do, but when Marky did it, it was a strip-tease.  Johnny decided to spank some sense into the kid.   But Marky just laughed. Johnny said: "I guess I need to use my belt."

"NO, Not the belt!"

Johnny gave in; he knew he could get in trouble if Marky told.   But he said: "OK, but I'm going to give you ten now just as hard as I can spank by hand.  OK?"

"OK."

When Johnny put him down, Marky danced he was so sore--but he was grinning.    Johnny said: "You can take a spanking, but you really shoudn't laugh at your brother."

"I didn't - I didn't!"

Johnny said: "Well, I thought you did, Marky, and you must apologize.   And cover your dick; you can't walk around bare like a baby."

Marky cried
with frustration and rage at the unfairness of being made to say he was sorry - and he just wouldn't say it.  Johnny smacked his bare bottom some more, with Marky standing up, and leaning into his "Daddy" to take them, hugging him and burying his sobbing face into Johnny's chest.   The spanks weren't super hard, but they went on and on, and after about twenty, Marky said he would apologize.

"Harry, I'm sorry I laughed at you because ... well I thought it was brave the way you took that belting and um  ... I love you."

"Then why are you such a pest?"

Johnny said  "I'm really impressed, Marcus.  That was really good.   You're pretty brave for a kid." 

Marky wanted to keep playing house - he forgot they were playing babysitter and called Johnny "Daddy."  Johnny didn't usually play with him so much, but he thought the kid had earned it, so they went to play in his room, leaving Harry to sulk by himself.   Marky liked to be a brat, and to be smart-aleky, and to make Johnny chase him, and he would squirm and fight back when Johhny tried to get him over his knee; that was the fun of playing house.    Johnny didn't spank him bare this time, though, and he play-spanked even lighter than usual.  Marky wiggled his bottom, and sassed worse than usual, but he didn't complain about the too-light spankings.   Johnny made him get into his jammys and made him brush his teeth and say his prayers, which took a lot of play smacking, and then into bed, which some more, plus Marky wouldn't go to bed without a kiss and a bedtime story.  And of course the game wasn't over with Marky in bed - he sneaked out again.    But when Johnny found him, Marky pulled down his pyjama bottoms down.

"Does this mean you want it a little harder this time, Marky?   You want to be spanked bare even on your sore bottom?"

 "Um .. kinda hard?  You know, kinda hard, so it's fun?   If you want to."  


Johnny said: "I was really surprised when I spanked you so hard before and you didn't cry."

Marky said "I won't cry.  You'll see."   And he didn't.   Harry came in and watched.    Johnny started very light on the sore bottom, but then spanked harder and harder--he wanted to see what Marky wanted.  But Marky just took it, biting his lip as he fought back the tears.

"Are you OK, Marky?   Do you want it this hard?"

Marky made a sob that Johhny thought was "I can take it," but then all at once he started to cry.   He cried so hard the tears were going into his mouth.

Johnny stopped spanking, but Marky wouldn't get off his lap.   Johnny said "I'll spank you some more later if want - but only if you can stop crying," and he gathered the boy into his arms for a hug and a kiss; Marky hugged him tight, still crying.  Marky held his breath trying to stop his crying, but he couldn't stop the sobs from coming back.   Johnny said: "Marky, you don't need any more spanking to impress me - it was really amazing how much you took before you started to cry."

Harry said: "Hell, that wasn't hard.  He gets away with murder from Dad, too.   I used to get the strap when I was Marky's age.  Boys should get the strap; a hand spanking isn't enough."

Marky looked at Johnny's face.   He had gotten his sobbing under control.   He asked Johnny: "Could you really be my babysitter tonight?"

"I don't think so, Marky; I don't think your parents are going out.    But we can play house any time you want, when I'm over here."

"I got spanked enough, didn't I?   I don't need the strap, too, do I?  But I can't wait till the next time we play baby-sitter." 

The next day, Harry compared his bottom in gym with the other boys, who had also been beaten for their report cards.     Harry's black butt didn't make the best show, but it felt like corduroy - "White dads don't know squat about whippin'" he said.  No one else had got it so bad for just one 8.  And like all the other boys, Harry boasted that he didn't care - that he wasn't scared of a whipping.   Coach saw the marks too, in the showers, and he admired the boys with the worst marks, and said those boys were real
 men.  Coach believed in discipline, and had fought the new no-spanking policy.  He had found a way around it though: the new policy didn't forbid spanking in the school, just spanking bythe school, so whenever a boy had demerits, Coach would phone the boy's dad, and the dad would stop by with his boy on the way to work.  The dads liked to show off to Coach that their boys were real men; they just laughed at the old regulation school paddle, and used instead straps or paddles they brought from home: ten or more strokes on the boy's bare bottom, when the old school rule was three strokes on clothes.     Coach liked to tell the boys how much worse their punishments were now, because of the school's no-spanking policy.   But Coach would always praise a boy if he took it without crying, and tell the class the number of strokes and describe the holes in the paddle.   Johhny felt like a freak - he kept it a deep, dark secret that he was never even spanked by hand.

Saul Levin was also skulking in the corner of the locker room, his bottom unspanked, on the day after report cards.  Saul's grandmother - he was an orphan - didn't believe in spanking.  But Saul was terrified of his grandmother's scoldings.  A boy couldn't admit being afraid of a licking, but Saul was scared of a scolding!  The whole school laughed at Saul - it was a school joke to say: "Bubbi will killme if she finds out," mimicking Saul's gestures.   As far as Johnny knew, Saul never got any 8s - too afraid of Bubbala.   But everyone knew that Johnny's report cards were bad.   That Johnny wasn't whipped, wasn't scolded like Saul, wasn't even talked to, was his deepest shame, and after other report cards he had been scared to death that someone would notice his white bottom.    But that morning, for the first time, Johnny didn't have to hide an untouched bottom on the day after report cards; because his bottom was as bruised as any boy's in the class.   He had beaten it himself.

Coached praised him for being a man, and Johnny felt like one of the boys.   Harry demanded a feel.  He said: "Wow, Johnny, your Dad really plasters you, too.   Do you get it for a C?   My dad's rotten, but he lets me slide about unless it's a D.   I guess maybe I wouldn't get so many C's if he whupped me for 'em.   A lot of boys get it for a C, but not me.   I guess my Dad thinks a C is good enough."  Johnny didn't lie, but he had looked away, as if he was ashamed of being whipped by his dad.   Actually, he was crying.   He knew that Harry meant it ; that he actually wanted his dad to beat him for getting Cs.  Harry didn't think his dad - whose whipping had utterly terrified Johnny - was strict enough.  Beaten for a C in math!   Johnny wouldn't have been punished if he'd gotten a girl pregnant.

When Johnny was watching Harry get those ten strokes for just one 8, he had in his pocket a report card showing seven 8s and a dean's warning, which was a much worse mark ; it was the last step before a suspension.   His grades were C's, D's, and F's; grades that no one gave a damn about, on a report card that no one would read.    When even little Marky had taken that long hard spanking, Johnny knew he had to do something.    Marky had two perfectly good parents already, and now he wanted Johnny, too, to play at spanking him for not brushing his teeth.  Johnny had nothing and nobody.   Since Nana Rosalia had left him - been forced to go - no one made Johnny brush his teeth; no one made him say his prayers; no one made him get to bed on time.  Johnny brushed maybe once a week, and didn't say his prayers any more at all.

And besides the spankings and the stern scoldings, playing house to Marky meant hugs, and tussling, and to have Johnny see him bare!   Johnny got no hugs, no tussling, absolutely nobody ever saw him bare.  Nana had seen Johnny bare since he was born, but his mother hadn't, not since then - if even then she hadn't turned away from seeing a penis!    Going fishing with dad like his friends did, pissing on a tree together and sneaking a peek at the old man's equipment - that could never happen to Johnny.  Johnny dreamed of that fishing trip, and swimming with his dad, skinny-dipping so his old man could see and admire his pubic hair and his grown-up balls.   But Dad had never seen his balls, and wasn't likely to.   He showed them to Nana as they got bigger and bigger, accidentally on purpose.   Nana didn't even blink when Johnny came out of the shower drying his hair, or pulled out his wiener and pissed while she was cleaning his bathroom - and he saw her bare too, at least her breasts.  She'd seen him bare all his life and she wasn't going to change just because he got older and got some hair on his balls!     She called him "you BIG man!" and swatted his dick.   Nana and Johnny had hugged and tussled - and in their close hugging when he came out of the shower, there had been kisses and those mild playful smackings for being naughty, for going bare.    Kisses and smackings that got her fired.

So Johnny didn't have Nana Rosalia any more.   He had only his discipline book, and it was clear he had not been strict enough.   Not as strict with himself as even little Marky.   Johnny had started the book on the night of the day he had seen Kath for the first time - or rather, the day he had heard her.   He had seen her on that day too, but he was already hopelessly in love before he turned around to look at her face - her voice, her soul, her spirit, her passion, her kindness, her strength, her yielding, her brilliance, her laughter.  And when he had turned around he knew, no face, but that face, would ever be so beautiful to him.  His spankings had been too light - more for pleasure when he masturbated than for anything else, but during his time of discipline by the book he'd gotten off booze, and he hardly ever got stoned any more, and didn't hang out with his old gang, and didn't get demerits.   He had done most of what he had set out to do.   Most of what he needed to do, before he was ready to ask Kath for a date, was done.  When he had opened his report card, the first one after starting the book, he had planned to ignore the bad grades and bad conduct marks earned before the book; that was the old Johnny,; he was the new Johnny.    But that afternoon he had seen Harry whipped, and given Marky a hard spanking.   Marky had taken the spanking because Johnny was his Daddy--even if only in a game.    Johnny didn't have a Johnny.   He had only his paddle and his book: and so, between coming home the day he had spanked Marky, and school the next morning, Johnny beat his own ass to a pulp.   
He had bruises to show off in gym, as fine as any boy's in the school.  

Then Johnny took responsibility for the bad conduct marks he had earned before he started the book--the marks he had planned to ignore.  And then, over the next two weeks, Johnny gone beyond his bad conduct marks, and spanked himself for his bad academic marks - for his Ds and his Fs, and even for his Cs - never less than a fifty swats at a time, on an ass that was agonizingly sore from the night before.   That had been his December report card.   Since then he had not gotten a single bad conduct mark, until today.  He enforced on himself a standard stricter than any teacher's:. by his own rules he had to be, not just on time for school, but ten minutes early--otherwise it was fifty strokes with the paddle, on each buttock;   But his paddle hadn't made him smarter.  For all the swats he had applied to his bottom for bad homework, week in and week out, month after month for the whole spring term, his academic grades had gotten worse, not better.   He had no idea what to do about it.

Of course Kath would get a belting for the 8 she had just earned for being late, and of course it was his fault.    If she got thirty strokes for being a few minutes late home, she'd get at least a hundred for an 8 on her report card!   A thousand spanks with his own paddle wouldn't make up for that, but Johnny decided to do a thousand: one hundred a day, every third day, for a month.   But even that was not enough; he would have to do something he was ashamed to do: ask Harry for a belting with his dad's strap.   Johnny wouldn't have minded asking George Azerkarian--George had even wanted to trade beltings--but George loathed him now.   Johnny considered asking George for a belting anyway but decided it wouldn't work; it would have to be Harry Insman.  Johnny would ask him today.

Kath and Johnny didn't have a class together until English, fourth period.   Johnny endured three class periods of deep misery, waiting for his chance to listen to her voice.   But when fourth period English came, Kath wasn't in class.   Betsy Azerkarian told Johnny that Kath had cried all morning, and had gone to the school nurse to ask permission to go home, but didn't get it, so she had just walked out of school.   Johnny put his English homework on Mr. Alvarez's desk, and ran out the door, covering the distance to Kath's house in about half the time they had taken that morning.

When he got to the door he could hear a belt hitting skin, so he tried the handle.  It wasn't locked.  Mr. Ramsay had his belt in his hand; his pants were starting to fall down.   Kath was bent over the table, her ass a horrible sight. 

"Whatever it is, it is my fault ... Sir."

Katherine said: "It isn't Johnny's fault.   None of it is his fault."

"You will have to work that out between ye.   But if the boy wants the rest he shall have them."

Johnny dropped his pants and underpants, his limp penis almost touching Katherine's upturned face.     Katherine started to stand up, but she said: "Ye mun face the wall, Johnny, and ye canna keek."'

Her Daddie said: "Don't come the cunt wi' me, hizzie!"

Johnny didn't turn away.   Katherine had to stand up, and Johnny stared at her cunt when she did.  She glared at him angrily, her eyes burning into his penis.  Then he bent over the table in her place.   Daddie told him it would be eighteen.

This time, the strokes of the belt came without any sort of warm-up, and they hurt like ten kinds of fire.   Nothing had gone right today, or ever would again.   Except right now he was taking strokes that would have been hers.    The first six were across his bottom.   Then Daddy made him strip naked, and pushed him into position, pulling his legs apart.   Johnny didn't mind being seen naked, but today it felt humiliating.  Daddie stood next to his left ankle.   The belt landed the length of the thigh from the top of the buttock down to a bit above the back of the knee - the tip crossed the six existing welts.   This really hurt - even more than the first six - but he knew that six on this buttock plus six on the other, would only count as six strokes, not twelve.   And Daddie whipped very slowly, slow enough that Johnny tasted fear in his mouth, and felt it pounding in his chest.  The taste was salt and bitter, a bit like Kath's cunt.  But nothing could be sweeter than strokes taken for her; the harder, the sweeter.  After six strokes to the left cheek and down the leg, Daddie stepped over to stand between his legs, and gave the right leg its share of the fun.

"Next should come six licks on the legs, Johnny.   But I mind my daddie used to wrap me ba's, like a turks head, in case of accidents, and I dinna ken how to do it, ha'ing had only the raising o' a lass.   So I'll have you put your legs together."   Johnny put them together, and Daddie hit six more strokes across his thighs.   These didn't hurt as much as the up-and-down ones.

"Get away to the kitchen with ye, Johnny.   Ye too, hizzie."

Katherine lay on her side, fully dressed, on a narrow thin pad under the kitchen table.   Johnny was still naked.

Johnny lay on the floor, next to her, not touching, but with his lips in a kiss-me pout.   He asked:  "What were we whipped for?"

"Cutting school.   He knows we had sexual intercourse.   I overheard Mither tell him a' aboot it - tha' she'd gi'en us a box o' rubber johnnies.  But he hasna whipped me for that at a'.   He hasna e'en tell me ta nae ta do it!   And he sent us in here together - I know he thinks we're going to do it, Johnny, right now.    He doesna know that ye ... I canna understand it ... - he used to whip me if ever I e'en talked to a boy.   I guess, well I guess he mun like ye a lot.   A whole lot."

"I like him."

"Why did ye come here, Johnny?"

"To take your whipping."

"You don't have to keep doing that."

"Don't have to?  Don't have to?  Kath, if there's ever been anything in my life that I had to do ..."

Johnny's voice faded away, and they didn't speak for some time.   Then Johnny mumbled under his breath.

"What's that?"

"Nothing."

"Johnny.   Tell me!"

"No. I ..."

"Tell me!"

"Well, it's...  It's my limerick.  The one I was working on last night for the contest.   I worked it out during the beating."

"Say it again."

"A sentry at Buckingham Palace,
caught a nude S.N.P.er named Alice.
   They asked how he got
          the drop on the Scot:
'Oh, this isn't a gun!  It's my phallus.'

"I was working last night on 'phallus,' 'Alice,' and 'malice.'   I don't know why - there's nothing Scottish about them and the limerick had to be about a Scottish lass.   Then running over here I thought of 'palace.'  During the licking I tried 'Holyrood Palace.'   I was sure that was it, and got excited - I wasn't thinking of the whipping then and it didn't hurt.   But it didn't work - "Buckingham Palace" would have better scansion : BUCK-ing-ham PAL-ace, you see, versus HolyROOD pal-ACE, but then it wasn't Scottish any more so it wouldn't work, so I got depressed again and then the whipping hurt like - well, like a whipping.   So then I tried to put the Scottish part in the two short lines, do you see what I mean, and then it sort of came together - sort of - but it wasn't very Scottish, not really.  And then just now I thought of putting in the SNP - I had 'apprehended a nudist named Alice' before, do you see, and then I had to change the two short lines all over again.  Still not very good those two lines, but good enough, I think.   Don't you think?   I would have entered it in the contest.   I think it's pretty good.  I think it's great!   This isna a gun it's my phallus!"

Katherine said: "Johnny, do you have your history homework?"

Johnny took a folded paper from the pocket of the jeans he was not wearing.   Katherine opened it.

She read: "Why was it so important to Grant to capture Vicksburg?  Answer:  Vicksburg belonged to Mr. Vick, who founded it.   Grant needed to capture it so he would have it and so the other guys wouldn't."

Katherine said: "Scansion."    Then she said: "Johnny, where is Holyrood House?"

"In Scotland."

"But where?  What part - what city?"

"I don't know - I just know it's in Scotland."

Katherine said: "O.K.  I will do it."

"Do what?"

"I'll do what ye asked me fer this morning - punish ye for yer mistakes in prep.  But ye must swear to accept the punishment I give."

"I don't need to swear that - I would be thrilled to be punished.  It's what I want more than anything."

"Swear - or I willna do it."

Johnny cut his arm with a kitchen knife, and put a bloody fingerprint on a bit of paper.   "Do I need to write what I'm swearing?"

Katherine shook her head, and put the paper in her pocket.

Johnny was grinning: "Kath, I really appreciate this.   I have a lot of things I need to be punished for.   I'll tell .. "

"JOHNNY!   Here is yer first punishmen, for Mr. Vick of Vicksburg, and fer a' the rest of yer answers on thon paper, every single one o' which is dreadful, Johnny.   Dreadful!   Go tell Daddie ye will be giving me a belting, and come back here and gi'e me one.   Six strokes, Johnny.   One for each wrong answer."

"You mean you give me six strokes."

Katherine took the paper with the bloody fingerprint out of her pocket.   "Ye will do as I say."

"Or you'll take a slipper to me?"

"Or I'll make ye take a slipper ta me."

"You can't make me do this."

"Och, I think I can, noo."

"I can't do it, Katherine.   Why are you punishing me by making me hit you?"

"Fer this, Johnny!"  She rattled the folded homework paper through the air.   "Fer getting sixty-one on an easy maths exam.  For a' of it!"

"I'm not as smart as you are."

"Johnny, tumshie-heids as get 61 on maths exams dinna use the technical terms to discuss verse forms!   They canna.  They could no more be tell ye that scansion was a kind o' thing in poetry, than that it be a kind o' ginger cake! They dinna ken castles in Scotland, Johnny.  They dinna ken that phallus is other way ta say penis.   And by the Cross, Johnny, they dinna ken the bloody Scottish National Party, and ken about elections in New Hampshire, and ken so much abou thon 'McCarthyism' that they make Mayor and all thon bloody Aldermen look right fools, and then, Johnny, somehow, somehowcan no e'en tell ye wha' the two damn sides were in their own damn Ci'il War!   How does that happen, Johnny?   How does that happen, Johnny?"

Kath was shouting at him.   Johnny liked it, he liked it a lot - not that he could understand a word she said.   But he said: "I'm asking you to help me!   This isn't going to help, Kath."

"Johnny Maria de Fatima Nunes, I have gi'en ye a punishment.  You will accept it, right now, right away, with nae more bloody argyment, or I will tear this useless bloody paper o' yers in two.   I am starting ta tear noo."

"No!   I'll do it.   I'll do it.  I'm going.   Mr. Ramsay - Daddie?   Katherine has been naughty, and I need to take my belt to her.  I hope you do not mind, sir."

"The lass has just had a licking.   Ye had better let me give her what she needs.   And you so moonin' over her yer nae likely hit hard enough."

"She needs to know that I will whip her when she is naughty, sir.   Do I need to be careful whipping her on top of the welts you gave her?"

"Aye.   That ye do.   There's a bit o' skill to it - and ye've had no lickin' from yer daddie.   Ye lay in all bummlin' and she'll maybe go bleeding on ye.   Ye best have her spread her legs, and whip on th' backs o' them."

"Thank you, sir.    Can you show me?  It will be easy enough to put some cloth to protect my testicles."   Johnny took his pants off again, and used them folded lengthwise between his legs like a loincloth - layers of cloth providing lots of protection for his balls.   He spread his legs nice and wide.  It was kind of fun, preparing to feel a new kind of beating, but then he thought of doing this to Kath, and that wasn't fun at all.  Daddie wedged the cloth of his pants more securely into his buttcrack.

"I'll just give ye one lightly, so you can see how it's done."

"Please Sir, six very hard - that's what I'll be giving Kath."

The belt wrapped around his leg so the tip smacked the inside of his thigh.  It was staggeringly painful, especially the tip.  The inside thigh where the tip hit was exquisitely sensitive; his bottom was like leather compared with the soft crepe skin of his inside thighs.  Johnny thought he felt blood trickle down.  By the sixth one he was in a sort of trance, looking down from above at his own body - a boy getting a whipping.   And that was only the first half; Daddie went around to do the other leg.   Johnny heart raced, and he had a feeling like this can't be happening - things as awful as this just didn't happen.  He felt dazed, and he couldn't bring his thoughts into focus.  Johnny watched Daddie lift the belt, but he noted, as if from a distance, as if it was some other boy, that he had gone half blind - that he saw Daddie dimly through a red haze - like through a tunnel.  Johnny wanted to shout "STOP" but he couldn't move a muscle - his tongue wasn't connected to his brain.  He wanted to run - he couldn't think of a reason not to run.  He couldn't remember why he was being whipped.   But he was paralyzed.   He was deaf too - with blood pounding in his ears so loud he could not hear even the strokes.  He lay still for quite a while after it was over, until his heart started to beat and his brain started to work and his eyes cleared and his ears could hear.   He tried to breath slowly and deeply, fighting the sob in this throat.  The other belting, on his bottom, had really hurt, but while it was happening he had been able to work on his limerick - trying to think of rhymes had distracted him from the pain.   This on his inside thighs had been a different level of pain altogether.   He hadn't had a thought - he couldn't have thought - while it was happening.      But he had been so dazed in this beating that he found it hard to remember the pain.   It was like remembering an injury he had gotten years ago.   There were deep emotions stirring; emotions he could not name.

"Thank you, sir.   Thank you very much."

"Johnny, how'd ye get these scars on yer erse?   I took a bit of Hitler bomb in my leg, but no such scars as ye have.   It look as i' a body skelped ye with a chunk of jagged pavement."

"I fell off my skateboard."

"Thon was bad fa'."

"I was going downhill.  I bounced the rest of the way down on my ass.   I was skateboarding naked."

"I mind in Glesgie we'd whip our peeries - that's a top - across the tram lines, with the tramcar comin'!   I was right scauret, but the other lads - ah I was afeart ta dinna - if ye see.   And go in the scud too - we'd go scuddy at canal, swimmin or lollin' on t' banks.   I get skelpt proper for't a' Mither catched me, but I couldna be the only lad ta wear breeks at canal, skelpin or nae.   And lassies 'd keek a' us - an we caught one, and tak her back o' dustbins, and keek up her jumper wi' her knickers doon.  I dinna lik ta do it, mind, but I know ye maun go wi' wha' do a' th'other lads."

"I was alone - no one dared me.   There wasn't a girl to watch me skate naked.  But I was scared of that one hill.   So I had to do it.   When I got out of the hospital I tried again, and did it."

"Brave lad.   You go on back to yer lassie - dinna keep her waiting for a beltin'.  It's nae fair ta her."

Johnny hurried back to the kitchen, carrying his pants.   Katherine was naked, bent over the kitchen table for a belting.  Johnny's body did what his body wanted to do - he didn't seem to have a connected brain today; he was just watching his body, not controlling it.  His arms grabbed her, pulled her up, and started licking and nuzzling her teats.  She barked from the pain as he sunk his fingers into her whipped ass.   "Spank me!" she shouted.   He slapped with one hand, still hugging her with the other, and pressing his face hard into hers.  The swats, or the kiss, rammed the hardness into his cock, with a pounding, urgent insistence that demanded his attention.  It was poking into her, and she took it in her hand and began to guide it in.

"No, I'm too close, I'm too close," he shouted, and pulled out of her, pinching the tip of his poker.   "Too late!   Ahh Ahh Ahh Ah oh dear Ah Ahh-a oh fuck."   A small white glob spilled out and dropped to the cracked kitchen linoleum.   Another drop slowly oozed out from his drooping stalk, and hung down about six inches, like snot.

"You pumped a half-cupfull on mither's apron, Johnny - do you like getting spanks more than gi'ing 'em?"

"Pitiful, isn't it.   I guess it shows the importance of a hearty breakfast and a good night's sleep.   Coach always says it improves performance."  

Johnny's hands were busy; his right hand pinching her nipple, while his left hand, the hand that didn't have semen smeared all over it, was ramming into her cunt.   For the other nipple, he used his mouth, nibbling hard - but Kath wouldn't stop talking.

"So it isna that you dinna like spanking me?"

"I adore spanking you, Kath.   I can't believe that you like being spanked.  If you like it we can do it every time - er - if - I mean - if there were going to be any more times we could have.    But if you wanted a spanking you didn't have to go through this rigmarole of saying it was my punishment to give you one."

"No Johnny, I'm not letting you off.   No more excuses.   Take your belt out of your pants - NOW.   You know what happens if you don't."

Johnny put his pants on and pulled his belt out of the loops, while Katherine arranged the room.   She stacked chairs upside down on the table, to give him room to swing, and put the Sears, Roebuck catalog on the floor to lift up her bottom.   She lay down with her legs spread wide apart.

"Not your thighs, Kath.    I just can't.   It hurt too much when Daddy whipped me there and I just can't do it to you.    I can do your bottom."

"Well.    I guess ye can do the up and down ones then.    Ochen ye ken six ta one buttock and aye six ta th' ither counts as six, and its six ye mun do."

Johnny knelt between her feet, in position to land the belt on her right buttock and down her right leg.    Her ass was badly striped across from the whipping she had gotten from Daddie, but there weren't any vertical stripes yet.   He got ready to apply some, aiming to make his welts as severe as the ones her Daddie had given her.

"Ye maun gi'e six strokes to each cheek, Johnny, and there will be more, for e'ery bad paper and e'ry bad exam, for aye as long as it take.  I'm nae going to enjoy this.  I like yer spankings fine but it's nae sexy when it's belt.   Your belt's a mite thicker than Daddie's so it'll hurt more.   This is serious punishment for me, fer yer mistakes.  And you mun strike hard, or I tear up the oath you signed.  No warm-up strokes."

"Kath, please.   Can't it just be a spanking?   It feels good, getting a spanking when we're having sex, so I don't mind giving you one, as long as we do it when my cock's up and you're aroused too.  When we're that excited maybe even a light belting would be OK."

"No, Johnny.   It has to be the belt - this is nae supposed ta be some'ut that feels good.   But I will give ye one chance.   If ye can answer a question - if ye can tell me ... oh ... where Holyrood House is, in what city in Scotland, ye can skip yer punishment.   But fer every mistake on every paper - history, maths, English - every one, ye mun gi'e me a stroke.  And e'ery point less than 100, Johnny, on e'ery exam.   I'll gi'e ye a chance each time, but the questions willna be easy:    What is the S.N.P. and what do they want?   Is 'Buckingham' an analept or an iamb?"

"But I don't know where Holyrood House is - I told you! - I just know it's in Scotland!   This is torture!"

"Too bad."

Johnny lifted the belt high, took a deep breath, and sent it crashing down.   But he happened to remember something, just then, about Mary Queen of Scots.   The shout of "Edinburgh" and the strike of leather on Scottish bottom sounded at the same time.   Johnny had tried to deflect the blow to the floor, but it just went crooked, and it landed edge on.   A dark red line marked the path of the belt's edge, and there were cuts.  Little tears of blood welled up, here and there, along the course of the whip track, where it crossed the other welts.    Johnny dropped the belt, and ran out the door.   After running a block, he shoved his livestock back into the barn, and zipped up the barn door.    He had to hold up his pants with his hand.


       
  TOP       X.   LARGO LACRIMOSSO: soprano  
Katherine wept for lost love, for Johnny lost for ever, but she recovered.   She was young, she was healthy.  And she had never, never for one moment, expected anything else.    The most wonderful boy in the school - in the city - in the world - could not possibly be for her.

She didn't sleep at all Friday night.  Saturday afternoon she slept, a bit, worn out with crying.   Saturday night was even worse; a deep misery that felt like an illness.  But by Sunday night, she slept normally, and she went to school on Monday.    Johnny wasn't there.   She was still having fits of uncontrollable weeping.    Tuesday was election day.    High School bairns didn't vote, of course, they were not 21, but the candidates had passionate supporters, especially McCarthy and Kennedy - they were like rival gangs; they got in fights.  In San Francisco, Republicans kept their mouths shut--George Azerkarian admitted his family was voting for Richard Nixon, and he was renamed The Dick Supporter, and he got his pants pulled off and his jock-strap shoved into his mouth; and they didn't give him back his pants.  But on Tuesday there was no more wrangling - they just wanted to know who would win.

Katherine found that some memories, especially the sexy ones, were starting to make her smile when she thought of them, instead of cry.   Johnny was not at school again on Tuesday.    She knew he would come back, and pretty soon he'd be walking around school with his hand in some new girl's hand, laughing and tossing his chestnut curls.   When that happened she would have to transfer to another school, or kill herself.

Killing herself seemed easier.   She was utterly hopeless.   When Johnny had run out the door, rather than give her a hard belting, she knew he would never come back.

And then, on Wednesday, when she opened the door to run to school, she bonked Johnny on the head.  He was groveling with his face pressed into the hallway linoleum.  

"I am ready to keep my oath now," he said; "to - um, belt you.  To give you the five strokes I owe you.    And I have some more homework for you to look at.   I just hope - I hope--Kath, if there's any mistakes in it I'm really really sorry."

But there was no time for her to be belted then and there; it was time for school.   They ran hand in hand, and there was no monitor to report them this time.    In fact there was no one in the school hallways at all; they thought for a minute they were actually too early, because everyone was on the playground - but not playing.  The kids acted strangely -  hostile, angry.   Nancy Bickerson was crying.   Johnny asked his friend Harry what was going on.

"They killed another one!"

"What?"

"Bobby Kennedy - he won the primary, so they shot him!   They said it was some Ayrab, but it was the C.I.A., like King!   They didn't want him to stop the war."

"What?"      Bobby Kennedy on the death of M. L. King, Jr. 

"Bobby Kennedy was assassinated last night.   In a hotel in L.A. after giving a victory speech.   They captured the guy they say did it - some Ayrab - but I say he was set up."

The kids on the playground milled about, listening to the news on a Japanese transistor radio which they weren't supposed to have on school grounds.  The bell for first class rang, but no one moved, except Johnny, and he dragged Katherine by the hand to her class.   He wasn't going to allow her to get another 8.   Katherine and the teacher were the only ones in the room.   But after half the period was over, the class came in.

"It's arranged," Nancy Bickerson said.   "Some hippies came by with leaflets.  There's going to be a march on City Hall - Democracy March, they call it.   To protest it when we vote for someone they don't like, and they kill him!   The rally starts at two, at the Civic Center - not just us - everyone - it's all organized, citywide."

"Nancy! Katherine!   No talking!   That's an 8 for each of you!"

Mr. Dingle hadn't given any 8s for tardiness, even though his whole class had shown up half-way through the class period.   So the class learned something about the power of numbers that day, although maybe not from the Dongle's math lesson.

At morning recess, the Kennedy supporters were angry, but also, in an odd way, triumphant.  They boasted that Bobby Kennedy had been the real rebel, the real threat to the establishment.   The kids who had supported McCarthy tried to pretend that they had really been for Kennedy all along. 

At lunch almost the whole school took off and headed downtown.    Katherine went too.   She didn't see Johnny.   They sang We Shall Over-co-o-ome.   Then one girl sang a Country Joe anti-war song, but when she tried to get everyone to join in, it was too hard.   They went back to We Shall Overcome.   Harry Insman was telling anyone who would listen that the C.I.A. had killed King, just like the C.I.A. had killed JFK.   

"But why this Bobby Kennedy?"   Katherine asked him, "Wasn't he just a candidate?"

"He was Attorney General under JFK.    He went after the Klan.   And the Klan owns the C.I.A.  Of course they killed him."

Saul said: "He was pro-Israel.  That was why that Palestinian killed him."

"No, that wasn't why.   It was because of the war.    Kennedy was the only candidate who could have beaten Nixon.    Johnson had the CIA kill him."   

"I bet it was that Humphrey - paying someone to get rid of Kennedy so he can win the nomination."  

The whole class started arguing, and We Shall Overcome died down.

Nearing downtown, they started to see other people crowding the sidewalks.  Some carried anti-war signs and they looked like long-haired college students from Berkeley.  They were singing All We are Ask-ing, is Give Peace a Chance.  They welcomed the San Francisco high-school kids with "Love Brother!" "Love Sister!"  There was the smell of marijuana in the afternoon air.   It was a festival.  The crowd started ignoring the traffic lights, streaming across intersections and into the streets, and cars surrounded by marchers just waited; San Francisco drivers young and old making V signs with their fingers for the peace marchers.   One of the college students had brought a guitar.

Some hippies came running from a cross street, there was a whiff tear gas, and some of the hippies were bloody.    The hippies were trapped by the solid mass of marchers, who were still moving forward, still singing.   They had started Michael Row the Boat Ashore, A-lle-LU-UU-ja!   The trapped hippies began to shout about the pigs who were chasing them.  Gradually the panic began to spread into the crowd.   They stopped singing.  Terror was like something that could be felt, pushing down, spreading from person to person.  But the crowd had nowhere to go, no direction of safety.   There were pigs behind them, and in front, toward City Hall, they heard sirens.   There was a lot of pushing and shoving.   Then the pigs came, in their blue helmets and gas masks, looking like space invaders and carrying, not clubs, but rifles.   The milling crowd became a frenzy, and Katherine was shoved, and she tripped and fell under a stopped car, in the middle of the street.   Someone stepped on her ankle.   Then someone fell on her.

It was Johnny, protecting her body with his own.   He tried the car door, it wasn't locked, so he picked her up and flung her into the back seat.   "Kath," he shouted at her, "don't get out of this car!   If you do I'll - I'll - I'll never spank you again as long as you live!"

Then the driver shouted "Get in and close the door, Nunes!  They're coming!"   Johnny jumped in, on top of her, but then he tried to turn around in the cramped space to close the door.  The driver jumped out to close the door, but Johnny got himself untangled and closed it first.  Before the driver got his own door closed again, a tear gas canister exploded a few feet away, and the car filled with the suffocating gas.   Johnny cranked the window, trying to breathe, but the gas was even worse outside.

The pain in her eyes and lungs was horrible, but what was worse was that she couldn't breathe, and was starting to faint.   She hadn't realized that dying took such a long time, or hurt so much.   Or that you felt so angry about it as it happened.   Furiously angry at the unfairness and frustration and shock that there was nothing you could do about it.  There was such a long time - so much time for agony before you died.   She could not fill her lungs.  She was dying.  She was dying now.  Slowly.  God Damn Fuck it to Hell!    This hurts!  Then someone smacked her face - Johnny.  "Kath, you fainted again, snap out of it."  He poured water on her eyes.   "Open them, Kath.   It'll wash out the gas."

Katherine's eyes felt like they had been gouged out with red-hot pokers, but she opened them.   Hot hurting light poured in.  She couldn't see a thing.  The water stung, but then the pain in her eyes went down a bit.   The water got all over the place.  There was something horrible about the taste of the water on her lips - sweet but prickly, and tasting the way the gas smelled.   Johnny was washing out his own eyes.  "That's better," he said.

"Johnny, can you see?   I've gone blind.  I'm blind!"

The driver said, "I can't see.  I got it right in the face.   But tear gas doesn't make you blind.  They wouldn't use it if it made people go blind - or maybe they would - but we would have heard about it if it made people blind.  We're just blind for an hour or two, I guess."

Johnny said: "Mr., thanks a lot for letting us use your car.  I can see pretty well now.   We should go."

Katherine thought she would be sick.   She managed to get sitting up, and opened the car door, and hurled on the tarmac.  Mostly.  Johnny handed her a bottle, Coca-Cola.  She drank a bit.  She realized that Coca-Cola was what Johnny had used to wash her eyes.    There were bags of groceries in the back seat - the man, who looked very old, had been caught in the riot driving home from the grocery store.

"Don't leave," the driver said.   "I'm still blinded and I need you.   And you're safer in here - what is going on out there?"

Johnny said, "I can't see much from here.  I'll go look around.   Lock the doors!"   And he slipped out of the car.

"You're a lucky girl.  I hope your boyfriend gives you all the spankings you want.   He's right about the doors - can you feel the buttons?"

"I'm no his girl."

"He just spanks you?   I never had a girl like that."

"Och he gave me a spanking and I liked it fine.  But he said we canna be together.  And he took my virginity!"

"A blind man can see ..."

There was a tap on the window.  Then Johnny tried the door and it opened.  Katherine hadn't locked it.

"It's not bad now, except for the gas.   I think there is a lot of rioting downtown though, the wind is coming from that direction.   A cop might come by and order you to move, and if you say you can't see I suppose he might drive your car."

"I'm starting to see a little.  Can you drive?"

"I don't have a license."

"Can you drive?"

"Yes."

"Then drive."

"But ..."

"Listen - I was in the longshoremen's riots in the thirties.   For a big riot Reagan will call out the National Guard, and they shoot people - they're not trained and they don't have riot gear.   People think riots are just fun and games but they're not.   There will be a big one some day and this looks like it.   When the cops get scared they shoot to kill, and the rioters throw stones, not flowers.  The rioters will probably come down Market, smashing windows, looting, turning over cars and lighting them on fire.  And they'll throw Molotov cocktails at the cops and the cops won't stop that with just clubs.  They'll shoot.  I've been in riots.  We need to get out of here."

"All right."

Johnny got out and got in the driver's seat.  He said: "I can't do it, the car I drove had an automatic transmission."

"Don't worry.  That's the clutch, step on it.   We're now in first.   Let go of the clutch.   Slowly!"   The car lurched.   "Fine - first gear is all we need."   The car lurched to a sudden stop and died.

"Sorry, I had to stop."  

"Not a problem, put it in neutral - that's here.
  Turn the key.   A little gas.  Good.  Ready to go?  I'll shift.   Let go of the clutch slowly and give a little gas at the same time.   Perfect.  Go.   Try to avoid hills - uphill is tricky with a shift.   Go south."

In front of Mission Dolores, Johnny stopped.   "Can you see now?"

"You're doing fine, Johnny.  Keep driving.   But let me show you this thing called 'second gear'."

"Where should I go, sir?"

"Oceanside.   My house.  Oh, my name's James.  Keep on south for now.   You're doing fine.   I'll shift.   Step on the clutch.   Now slowly let it out and give it a little gas.   Not that slowly.   Johnny, do you love her?"

Johnny stalled the car.


         
  TOP       XI.   TRIO SONATA: pipe organ
Their rescuer was James Denson, retired vice-president of the Teamsters' Union.

The Teamsters were trying to organize the workers at Johnny's father's business, and Johnny had heard many stories of the notorious "Red Jimmy" Denson.   Johnny said: "I am George Nunes's son."

"I know who you are.   How do you think I knew your name?   I thought you were your father, when you threw a girl in my car and said, "Stay there or I won't spank you."    You sound just like him - and it's just the sort of thing Jorge Nunes would say.   And when I looked in the mirror I thought Jorge had found the fountain of youth - you look more like him, than he does."

"So when you told me to get in the car, you thought you were rescuing your greatest enemy?   He says you're the most dangerous Red in the city."

"I wouldn't say he's my greatest enemy.   I've known about Jorge Nunes since he was a boy lugging crates on Fisherman's Wharf, selling cars from a list he kept in his pocket.  I bought this car from him; I wouldn't buy a used car from anyone else.   He knew he was selling a car to his greatest enemy, to the man who was trying to wreck his business, and he gave me the same fair price and same good service he gives everyone.  He does what he says he'll do, and when there's a problem, he fixes it."

"I guess that's why he's always busy."

"You're old enough to know what everyone in town knows, Johnny.   Your father is never home, because he has mistresses."

"Mistresses?   Plural?"

"Well, one at a time, as far as I know.   But they don't last long.   Turn left on Ulloa."

Jimmy lived in a small but neat Spanish stucco, on a street of them that looked all alike.   But when they parked, Jimmy didn't get out of the car.  They waited for a bit.   Cars going by had their lights on, in the fog.

"Johnny, here's something not everyone knows.  Your Dad likes to whip women.   Or maybe he likes to be whipped - I don't know and I don't care.   What I do know is that he goes a lot to certain places where girls like that - young girls like that - can be picked up.   Certain bars.   There are a lot of teamsters and longshoremen in those bars, and your Dad's picture is in his ad in the Auto News section every Sunday.  He picks up a girl in a cheap bar, takes her out to fancy restaraunts, takes her to buy clothes in those fancy places where the salesmen are all light in their loafers, and then he gives her jewelry.   Too much jewelry.   They're seen in the restaurants, so it's no secret, except where he got her - and the whipping.  He whips the girl for a few weeks, and then she takes her diamonds and goes.  And he goes looking again.   This girl here - I think I've seen her around - did you pick her up in front of the Spyglass in China Basin?   Or does she work in one of those bars on Mission like the other girls fresh off the boat?"

"She would never even be in a place like that.  Kath isn't a whore, Mr. Denson.   I don't know how you could think that.   She's in my school.   She's nothing like that."

"Oh, they are all nice girls.  Schoolgirls.  Somebody's daughters.   Minister's daughters, a lot of them.  Girls have to eat, and they are runaways, mostly.  San Francisco is as far as anyone can run, and when they get off the bus, there is always a kind man waiting."

"Why would anyone run away from home?"

"Because they were beaten too much, or raped by their step-fathers, Johnny - it's not because they're bad girls.   They're good girls -  it's not their fault - but, Johnny, they all have boyfriends - pimps - every one of them.   Maybe they love their pimp and maybe they're just scared of him - either way it's bad news for your Pop.   And don't you go looking for girls around those bars either, Johnny.  Don't be like your Pop.  If you like to spank girls - well, that's one way, and I know you have the money in your pocket, but it's not worth the risk.  Don't pick up a whore anywhere in the Tenderloin or in China Basin, unless you want the mob to know what you do for fun."

"I won't.    Are you really a Red?   Is that why you have friends who are whores in cheap bars?"

"We just want to be paid more.   If that makes us reds, we're reds.    But we're not working for a revolution - we play by the rules.   Does your pop?"

"I don't agree with the things he's done in this strike."

"Will you come in - if you dare associate with a notorious Red?  We all need a shower.  Miss, I don't know your name?"

"Katherine Ramsay."

The house was spotless.  It looked as if Jimmy lived alone.   "I'm afraid there isn't much hot water."

"You mun go first, Mr. Denson."

"I'm used to it cold - I was in the Navy.   Look, why don't you two just shower together?   No need to be shy about it, it's obvious you are boyfriend and girlfriend."

"I am not her boyfriend."

"So what did you mean when you threatened to stop spanking her?"

Johnny said: "Well of course I want to be her boyfriend.   And when she lets me - um - well - um - sometimes - well, she did want a spanking once.   And she's made me promise to give her one with my belt.   I owe her eight strokes."

"Strokes with the belt?    So you are like your dad.   You do really want them, Miss Ramsay?  If this rich boy has offered you money ..."

"Och no, nowt lik that at a'!  I made Johnny promise ta do it.   He's a fine lad and ye shouldna ... truth he doesna want ta do it at a'"

For a while, no one said anything.   The subject of eight strokes of the belt on Kath's naked arse hung in the air, as if the males were counting them already, in the silent room.   Mr. Denson looked back and forth at the faces of the young lovers, who could not look at each other.   Finally Johnny cleared his throat, and asked a question he found very hard to ask.

"Mr. Denson, will you watch?   Can I give her the whipping I've promised her, here, with you watching?"

"Why do you need a witness, Johnny?"

"To stop myself from jerking off!  To stop myself from enjoying it!   Look!   Just from thinking about it!"  Johnny unzipped and let his painfully imprisoned member spring out.

Jimmy said: "If she wants it, you should keep your promise and whip her.  Even if you enjoy it, that doesn't make it wrong - not even if you do your chores - I mean, milk the cow.

Johnny looked bewildered.

"Jerk off, do it, beat your meat; whatever you boys call it now.    Masturbate.    But I can't watch that, can't watch a boy do it, and I don't think the young lady would like me to watch her get a hiding, on her hiney.   Her raw bare hiney."

"Kath, ask Mr. Denson to watch.   I must have a witness if you want me to do this at all."

"Wha'ever ye say, Daddie.  Mr. Denson, will ye watch me get a wee licking?"

Without waiting for him to agree, Kath took off her skirt.   Jimmy was staring at Johnny's erection - ogling it.   Johnny was a little shy to be looked at, since his erection was shorter than average according to the tables in Masters and Johnson, and even at its hardest it stuck out at a downward angle.  But Jimmy didn't seem to mind; he ogled Johnny's prick like he was eating ice cream.   He didn't even glance at the girl stripping naked under his nose.

Johnny began to be annoyed by this open staring at his privates.  "Do want to jerk off while you watch, Mr. Denson?  I don't mind.   Kath, do you mind if Mr. Denson wanks?"   Johhny pulled his broad belt from its loops.      Mr. Denson's eyes left Johnny's hard rod and followed his belt hungrily as he folded it and swished it through the air.

Katherine said: "I've never seen a man wank.    Can I watch ye, Mr. Denson?"

"I'm not going to masturbate with you two in the room.    Katherine's under age.  And you can't do that while I'm here, either."   Katherine was working Johnny's balls with her fingers.

Johnny said: "Maybe we'd better go."

"Well, if you're going to - um - let me get you a - um - uh - Johnny, your pop does tell you things, doesn't he?    About - um - precautions and things?"

"I do know about condoms, if that's what you mean, Mr. Denson.  But it wasn't my Dad who told me.   I wish I had a dad like you - like when you told me not to pick up whores.   My dad doesn't talk to me like that, he just - somehow he makes everything all wrong, all horrid, when I screw up - he's so freaking weird about stuff, he's so up-tight, but he doesn't, he doesn't, talk to me.  When I screw up be blames anyone but me, and it's horrid.   But you don't have to worry about us - uh - fucking.   That's not happening here.   Just a whipping."  

Jimmy choked.   "I didn't mean you have to do it in a public park!    You can do it here if you want, it's not safe in Oceanside Park.  And I do have condoms you can use - or take.  I want you to take them, and use them.   I just can't be part of it - not with a girl under age.   I can leave; go for a walk.  I shouldn't even be watching while she does - um - that!.    I can watch Katherine get her licking, but nothing sexual.   Nothing like - um - that!    Oh, my God!   Oh, my God!"

Katherine had not stopped working Johnny's balls, or pinching the tip of his dick so hard it made him jump.    She hadn't done that before.   Johnny liked it well enough, but just the sight of it seemed to be giving Jimmy a fit.   Jimmy's mouth was saying the words, telling them to stop, but his body was quivering with lust, drooling as he watched Johnny shake and dance with pleasure from the tickling of his balls.     And Jimmy was fascinated by the belt, as Johnny swung and swished it through the air, taking practice swings near the girl's available and offered ass.    Jimmy's eyes tracking the belt drove Johnny to intense arousal - more even than the tickling of his balls.

Johnny asked: "Do you wan't to belt me, Mr. Denson?    That would be legal, wouldn't it?   It's not sexual if you punish me."

"Of course.   Well, it wouldn't be considered sex with a minor.  It might be called assault, since I'm not your dad."

"I can tell you are interested, Mr. Denson, and I don't mind another belting.   It can't be assault if I ask for it."

"Why would I give you a belting, Johnny?"

"Because you'll get a turn-on from it, and because it's the only thing we can do that's legal."

"But why are you willing to take a whipping to give me a turn-on?"

Johnny swung the belt around his head and brought it down on a couch cushion with such force that the cushion split open.

"BECAUSE I CAN'T TO DO THAT, TO KATH!"

No one said anything after that.


Finally, Mr. Denson asked: "So, you're not going to do what you promised?   You're not going to whip her?"

"I'll do it.   I can't bear to hurt her, but every time I think about it, my cock shoots up.   I'm going to enjoy it - shouldn't I be punished for that?   Please, Mr. Denson, can you whip me hard?  Really, really hard?  Won't that be a turn-on for you?   Or do you only get turned on if it's a girl?"

"I guess you can tell - I do get turned on by whipping.  Boys or girls."   Jimmy took the belt from Johnny's hand.

"O.K. by me then.  Hope you enjoy it."     Johnny dropped his pants and bent over the arm of the couch.  After a bit, he said, "This is great!"   And then when a little more time passed and the whipping still didn't start, he asked casually: "What boys and girls do you whip, Mr. Denson?"

Jimmy dropped the belt.    There was a sudden loud silence in the tiny chintz-covered room.

Johnny spoke: "Do you pick up girls in bars?    Is that why you know about those bars?    Look Mr. Denson, I don't mind.   What you told me was good advice, even if you don't follow it yourself.   You obviously know all about the girls you bring home for a whipping.   How much does that cost?   In addition to the cost of the sex, I mean.  How much do you have to pay a girl to whip her?   I'd like to know, even if I decide not to do it.  Look, you don't have to be perfect to be a Dad, Mr. Denson.   I just want you to talk to me like one.   I want you to stop me from picking up girls--I don't mind if you do it."

"No, Johnny, I don't pick up girls in bars."

"Well good then.    More than eight strokes if you want.  You choose.   You're the Daddy."

Jimmy didn't pick up the belt.   He said: "Johnny, I don't pick up girls in bars, because I don't pick up girls.    Around the back of those bars, in the alleys, crouched behind the trash cans, there are boys.  Young boys.   Beautiful young boys.   Boys who go naked, if it isn't too cold, to get more customers.  Girls in bars are thirty bucks.    Boys are five."

"You're a fag."

"I'm a fag."

"You have sex - I mean you stick your hard cock in a little boy's bottom, in some dirty alley behind a bar?   A boy younger than me?   That's what you do for sex?   I don't - um - but that's - uh - that's -    And they would be under age, too."

"Johnny, sex with grown men is illegal.   Being a fag is illegal.    It doesn't matter what age they are, if you're a fag.    You think cops care about protecting rent boys from their tricks?"

"Masters and Johnson don't think homosexuality should be illegal though, Mr. Denson; a lot of people don't; I've been reading about it.   But a little boy, in the bottom?  Nobody thinks that's right."

"Johnny, I would never do that.    I do pick up boys.   I bring them here, for a bath and a meal, and we sleep in the same bed.   And if they want to, only if they want to, I tell them they can masturbate while I watch.   No penetration."

"But you whip them?"

"Spank them.   The ones that want it.    They crawl across my lap.  Or they do something naughty, and look at me with wide eyes, waiting for me to do something about it. And afterwards they are so affectionate.   It upsets them, not being allowed to suck my cock.  One boy wanted to masturbate, but then be whipped for it.   Punished and scolded every time he had pleasure; he couldn't come, otherwise."

"But they canna really want a whipping, Mr. Denson.   Who would?" - that was Katherine.

"No Kath, I can understand it.   Mr. Denson told me not to pick up whores, that it isn't safe.   He told us not to fuck in the bushes in Oceanside Park.  That's good.  He cares about us some.  If I knew he'd try to stop me from paying a whore - that he'd watch out for me doing it and whip me if he caught me - well no one's ever done that much for me.  You don't know what that's like; you have your Daddie.  And these boys are runaways.    I'd be the same.   I am the same.  These boys don't have dads, either."

"But he isna a Daddie for them.   He's nowt like a Daddie!  He picks up boys for one night.   Don't you, Mr. Denson?"

"Sometimes a month, or more.    But they've all left, sooner or later, except David."

"Who's David?"

Jimmy Denson pointed to a framed photo of a boy in the cap and gown of high school graduation.  He said, proudly: "He's at Cal.     He comes home weekends, if he doesn't have a hot date.   He tells me about the boys in his classes he has crushes on.    And before you ask, yes, we still have sex.   He is - he was - just a naked boy I picked up behind a bar.  So I don't think I'm what you want for a Daddy."

Johnny picked up the belt, and held it out to Jimmy.   He tried to look wide-eyed.

"And, Johnny, there's something else.   I'm still picking up boys.    David doesn't know about them." 

"Jimmy, I don't mind about them.   I just want to be one of them.    Do I have to be naughty?   Can we just cut to the chase - to the part where you belt me?"

"I can't whip you, Johnny."

"Why not?   Don't say I'm under age.   All those runaway boys must be under age.   And you're a fag, so it doesn't matter what age I am."

"But you're not a rent boy on the street.   You're the son of the richest man in San Francisco.   And it is still assault."

"Third richest.   So all you can do is watch me whip Kath?"

"Well - "   Jimmy ran to the next room and came back with an armful of carved wooden penises.  " - you could stick one of these up my ass.   If anybody asks, I'll say you helped me cure my piles."

Johnny picked the biggest, jaggedest wooden penis, and Jimmy stared at it.   Jimmy turned around, dropped his pants, and bent over, spreading his butt-cheeks with his hands.  He did have piles.  Johhny bent around to look at Jimmy's cock.  It was still not up.   But even hanging loose it was longer than Johnny's erection. 

Johnny reached in and fingered Jimmy's limp member: "It looks like you need a spanking first."

Jimmy gasped and jerked and moaned from the touch of Johnny's hand on his dick.   But he croaked out: "Don't spank me!"

"You wanna watch - you're gonna get.  All those boys you spanked - I think you've earned one yourself!  Do you want it to be me or Kath?"

"I don't want a spanking.   I don't."

"You can't spank him if he doesn't want it, Johnny."

There was a tense silence.    Jimmy was bent over, positioned to be rammed with the rod - or thrashed with the belt.    Johnny was standing with his belt in his hand, poised to strike.    Johnny gave in.    "O.K.    No belt."

Jimmy stood up and looked at Johnny.    "Do you really think I've earned it?"

"Never mind.   I just thought you might want a light spanking, better than just watching.   Since you won't whip me."

"I don't run away from things.   If you think I've earned it, let me get you the ...."

But without waiting, Johnny pulled back and gave a tremendous whack on Jimmy's shirttail with the belt.  Jimmy yelped from the unexpected pain, and tried to get away in a panic, but his pants were around his ankles.   Johnny pulled him down to the floor, across his lap, on top of his hard erection, and started to spank with his hand.  He had Jimmy's long lank cock between his knees, and  as he plastered spank after ferocious spank on the old man's skinny arse, the long cock stiffened right up.  Johnny's hard cock got quite a work-out too as the old man flailed and twisted under the spanking.   Jimmy's groans and moans could have been either pleasure or pain.

Johnny had to stop because he was about to come.    His cock was leaking clear fluid - he hoped he hadn't broken something.    It hadn't felt as good - as utter - as an orgasm, but maybe it had been an orgasm.

The boy and the old man faced each other, both on their knees.   Johnny's need was slaked, for the moment.    But Jimmy's was not, and Johnny could see it in his eyes.    Johnny had only felt it a few times in his life, that need so strong you couldn't fight it - that need so strong it could make you jerk off in the street.   Except with him it hadn't been a need to jerk off, it had been a need to fuck Kath, and it had happened in English class.    He hadn't raped Kath, he had just run out of the room with a a boner so hard he couldn't stand upright, and had unzipped in the hall - which wasn't empty but he just couldn't make it all the way to the boy's bathroom.   The teacher in the hallway watched to see what he was doing.  Johnny didn't need to masturbate; just the friction of letting his boner out of his pants sent his semen shooting out, splattering the wall.  The teacher gaped, but she didn't do anything.  When he went back into class he'd told Mr. Alvarez he'd had an urgent need to relieve himself, and had to run out or wet his pants.   The class had laughed at him but it was the exact truth.

With a pleading, anguished look in his eyes, Jimmy raised his hand.    But the cock he grabbed, wasn't his own.

Johnny didn't like that, or rather, he liked it a lot but he didn't want to like it.  He'd often thought about doing it with a guy, especially sucking each other's cocks, and he had studied the section in Masters and Johnson to see if this meant he was a fag.   He didn't think he was a fag though, because he had never wanted a cock up his butt.      But Johnny considered his options.   He desperately wanted Kath, who despised him.    But he himself despised Betsy Azerkarian, and all the other Betsyoids at school, not one of whom was even a little bit like Kath.    He wasn't a herterosexual, he was a Katherinosexual.    An old man who actually wanted him looked pretty good, at this point.    And spanking Jimmy until both their cocks got hard had definitely been fun.   He wouldn't mind doing that pretty often, switching positions.   Johnny teetered on the edge - and the old man's fingers working on his cock made it very hard to think.

But he tried.   Without pulling away or doing anything to stop the old man milking his cock, he said: "You have to let me go, Mr. Denson.   Please let me go.   Kath's not my girlfriend, but that doesn't mean I can have sex with someone else when I'm with her."   Johnny was very close now, and pulling away was beyond his power.

Jimmy didn't stop.   But Johnny found that by an act of will he could make the sensation less intense - he could resist the shocks of pleasure.

Johnny wondered how he could possibly have been such an idiot - spanking an old man until they both got hard-ons, right in front of Kath.   He had totally blown it.   Fuck it, he thought.   Fuck it, I screwed up, again.   Fuck it!    How could I even think of having sex with a man?   I am not a fag - I'm just such a screw up!    And then, suddenly, Johnny didn't care any more.  He had fucked up so badly he just didn't give a damn.

Johnny reached for Jimmy's long thin rod. "I'll do it.   I'll jerk you off."

Jimmy looked at Johnny's hand.   He gasped and shook from the touch.

"We can't .    Johnny, we can't.   We can't."     Jimmy pulled his hand away from Johnny's cock.   But then he put it back.

Jimmy's long cock was wooden hard now, and his eyes were pleading, and his whole body was begging, but his lips were saying no.  Johnny did not let go, and every light touch made Jimmy moan and gasp.    They kept fondling each other for some time, but Jimmy wasn't paying attention any more to what he was doing with his own hand, as he squirmed and jerked from the pleasure in his own cock.   Jimmy's hand work wasn't anything Johnny couldn't handle.     But for all Johnny could do, Jimmy didn't come.

Johnny stopped.   "O.K.   No jerking each other off - I guess we're not meant to do this if neither of us can make the other one come!  But the stick up your butt is legal?  Where's the vaseline?"

"No lube."

Jimmy assumed the position again, bent over and spreading his butt cheeks with his hands, and Johnny jammed the oversized penis up into his skinny wrinkled ass.

"In and out - further in!  Harder!  Change the angle - back a bit!  Perfect!   Now twirl it!"

The wooden penis was all jags and sharp knobs.  Johnny's butt clenched tight from just the thought of such torture, but Jimmy was shaking with pleasure.   It looked like it felt as good as an orgasm but an orgasm was over in an instant.  Jimmy's pleasure from his ass went on and on and on - lasting orgasmic pleasure that Johnny only got from good smackings on his bottom.  

Johnny asked: "Do you have any vaseline?"

"What do you want it for?"

"I want to try that.   Maybe I've got piles too."

"You faggot!"

"Yes please!"   Johnny pulled his underpants down and bent over and spread his butt cheeks with his hands.

"It looks like what you really want is my cock.   Don't you, Johnny?"

"No."

"Just for that you're getting the prickly one - dry."

Johnny wanted the little smooth one, with lots of vaseline, so it would be like Nana Rosalia's finger.  But he felt somehow that he couldn't object.   He had spanked Jimmy, and now he was on the bottom, and he was subject to whatever Jimmy wanted to do to him.  Spanking or fucking or anything.  Even though he was scared of the big wooden penis up his butt.   There would be no adventure if he didn't let Jimmy do what Jimmy wanted to do.  He wanted Jimmy to be the daddy.

But just thinking about Nana Rosalia's finger, worked in his little boy asshole to pull out his impacted shit, put Johnny at the edge of screaming.    He shouted "condom!  condom!"   Jimmy ran to the bathroom, but the box he came back with turned out to be empty, and then he ran to his bedroom.  He came back waving a strip of condoms.

Johnny shouted "Kath, do you want it or not?   Yes or no?"

"Uh ... Uh .. I ...uh ..."

But it was already too late.    Johnny started to howl, and when he touched his penis, trying to get the condom on it, he squirted all over the rug.

Jimmy was in the corner, facing the wall, pumping his shaft, dealing with his need.   But nothing seemed to be happening.   Johnny put himself where Jimmy could see him, and masturbated his own limp, spent cock - Jimmy peeked, but it didn't help.

But finally, he sighed, and a little thick white goo came out of him.   He had seemed to enjoy every light touch of Johnny's hand on his cock, far more than he had enjoyed his private climax.

Johnny pointed at the glob of semen.  "Good come, Mr. Denson?"

Jimmy looked rather tired.   "Call me James," he said.   "And if any one asks, I was in my bedroom.  Alone."

Kath was in a daze, and her careful American accent slipped away.  "And are ye nae ca'd Jimmy?"

"The boys call me James."

"They dinna skelp ye?   Ye seem ta laik it fine."

"I haven't had a spanking in a long time; it's not something the boys would do.   I did like it this time, from Johnny.  But if I need be punished for spanking the boys, it should be a punishment, not pleasure; something harder than Johnny's hand.   I own a leather reform school paddle.  Do you think I deserve it, Miss Ramsay?   If you say I deserve it, I will let Johnny punish me, and you will choose the number of hits."

Johnny said: "I'm not in the mood for it, right now, it's too soon after my cum.   I couldn't punish anyone right now.   Some other time.  And I'm not sorry we jerked off each other's cocks, Jimmy - I mean James."

"We can't ever do that again - and you must never tell anyone!"

"But the boys do it, what we did?   It's not just you watching them jerk off; I'm sure there's more to it than that.  They jerk you off with their hands.   I just wanted the same as any other boy you picked up."

"Johnny, it's true.  They have sex with me.  They suck me.  But I swear I've never told a boy he could only stay if he had sex with me.   They have food, and a bed, and a roof over their heads, and a little pocket money, for as long as they want, and don't owe me a thing.   Mostly they just need food, rest, and a chance for their assholes to heal.    They don't have to do anything.   It's only if they want to.   And no penetration.  I don't fuck boys' bottoms.  I don't stick my cock down boys' throats.   If they suck on me when I'm asleep, they get a spanking."

"But do ye ken why they leave ye. Mr. Denson?    Isna a home what they dream about?   Ye mun be a homeless boy's dream?"

"He doesn't give them a home, Kath, just a house.    Love is what they dream about, not a house.   A dad is what they dream about.   I wish Jimmy cared enough about me that he'd blister my butt raw if I ever pick up a whore in the Tenderloin, but he won't.   What do those boys get?  Food?   A roof?  Fuck it!   He lets them walk out of here and go back on the street!   A real dad would make them stay - he would punish them for running away from this house, and punish them horribly for sucking mens' cocks on the street.  That's what a dad would do -what  any dad would do, for his own son.   Don't you think a boy who sucks cock on the streets wants to be punished?   You have such a cool dad, Kath, he punishes you for kissing a boy.   But I'm an orphan, as good as.     Can't you understand about not wanting to be allowed to do bad stuff?"

Jimmy said: "I don't think the boys deserve to be punished, Johnny, or want to be.  I try to do what I can for them.    I'm not their dad.   Some of them ran away from dads who beat them."

"Say I'm one of your boys.  Will you beat me if I leave here and go back on the streets?    Will you beat me now, for stuff I've already done, to show me it's for real?"

"You really want to?   You're not just talking?   You really want hard punishments?   Punishment for breaking my rules?   I've thought maybe the boys did want that, but no one has asked me but you."   

Johnny nodded.     But he got a sick feeling in his belly.   When Jimmy said "hard punishment" it sounded serious, and he was frightened by the idea of a leather reform school paddle.    He thought - those street kids can take it.  Sure - they soak it up and come back for seconds, but they must be super tough.   Think of it - living on the streets.   Sleeping under some newspapers on the cement.   I wish I was like that.   But I'm going to have to take this, however much it hurts.   I can't get out of it.  I asked for it and Kath is watching.

But in the end, Mr. Denson simply would not beat Johnny with his leather paddle right away, for all Johnny's begging.   Johnny had run out of diversions, and now there was a leather reform-school paddle available.    But maybe Kath wouldn't think of asking him to use it.

Johnny said: "Kath, I should do something for you.   Do you want me to use my tongue - or my hand?"

"I don't want anything from you."

The thin ice cracked.   Johnny plunged back into misery.   Kath did not want him after all.   Of course not.

Johnny was brave.   He didn't cry.   He made an effort to sound as if nothing had happened, but his voice shook: "Shall we see if Mr.Denson has a good showerhead for masturbating?"

"Well, we do need a shower.  You go first."

"I'd like to shower with you Kath.   But I won't go first."

"I won't go first."

Jimmy gave them each a swat, and a shove in the direction of the bathroom.


         
  TOP       XII.   TARANTELLA:  allegro furioso 
Katherine pulled Johnny into the bathroom by his tadger, and pulled his knickers down.

"In the tub wi' ye, young laddie."

"I've been bad, Mommy.   I need to be spanked."

She gave him another swat.  "Inta thon tub, NOW!"

He stepped in.  She said: "Lie down!"

Katherine ran the shower.   Johnny screamed: "Stop - It's too hot!"  

Johnny started to flail around, trying to get out of the way of the water.   Katherine turned it off.   Clouds of steam were rising.  She scrubbed Johnny all over with a stiff brush she found, and she paid no attention to his howls as she vigorously scrubbed his crotch with it.   He screamed even louder when the stiff bristles raked his nipples.  She was a bit more gentle with his face, but she used lots of soap, and managed to get most of it into his eyes.  When he opened his mouth to scream she put the soap bar into it.  Mr. Denson walked in.

"That's the brush I use for cleaning the toilet."

"Good.  Turn over, Johnny."

Turned over, Johnny got to rinse out his eyes and mouth, and his back and ass were tougher than his nipples, so he didn't scream with pain from her scrubbing with the hard bristles, but let out moans of satisfaction and pleasure.   So she wacked his bottom with the back of the brush.

"Ow, Ow.  Please, no more.   Ow.   It hurts.  Ow.  Wahh.  You're hurting me."

But he was only pretending to be in pain.   Even with the brush, Katherine did not have the strength to cause him more pain than he found a pleasure.   If she'd truly been hurting him, he would have bitten his tounge rather than say "ouch."  She knew he was laughing and his tadger was pushing so hard against the foor of the tub he had to lift his crotch to reposition it. 

Katherine handed Mr. Denson the brush.   "Maybe you can hit him harder than I can."

"He asked for the belt, but I guess this will do.   How many should I give him?"

"Until he begs for mercy."

"Mercy!"

"Give him as many as he gave you."

Mr. Denson's skinny arms weren't any stronger than her own.   But he pulled back and drove home in a big arc, using his shoulder, and not, as Katherine had, the wrist.   It was a hard smack, but Johnny was so aroused  he enjoyed even this.    Katherine took back the brush and copied Mr. Denson's big swinging arc, and could hit harder.   As blow followed blow, Johnny stopped laughing - he turned sullen, feeling quite serious misery.

Kath asked him: "Johnny?"

"Yes, Kath.  It ... doesn't ... HURT!   You ... can  ...   keep  ... spanking ... me.    Uhh.  As ... long  ... suhh ... as you want."

"Are you ready to belt me now?"

"I swore I would do it."

"But do you want to?"

"I don't see why ..."

Katherine turned on the hot water tap and flipped the knob to send the water to the shower.   Johnny screamed and flailed about, as the near-boiling water beat down on him.  He slipped and fell as he tried to get up and out of the tub.   "Fuck it, Kath, are you trying to kill me?   What the fuck are you trying to do?"

"Are you ready to belt me now?"

"I'm going to beat you till you fucking bleed!"

"Good, now ye be ready.   Eight strokes, Johnny, and a' as hard as ye can."

James said: "I'll get you the leather paddle, Johnny"

"Kath - go into the living room!   On the floor!"

Katherine chose a spot where Johnny could make a good swing, if he started with whipping straight across her bottom.   But he didn't.

"Spread your legs!"

Katherine spread, glad.   He had never been angry with her before.

"OK.  I'm doing it.   There's eight strokes I have to give you.   But don't I get to skip some if I can answer a question."

"Nae, forget aboot that.   Ye just whip me hard.   Noo!"

"OK.  But I did remember about analepts.   At least I know BUCK-ing-ham is not an iamb."

"Mr. Denson, kick him!"

"OK, I'm doing it.  Here it comes."

Johnny delivered a solid hard stroke, with his own belt and not the leather paddle, and it made a very loud slap.   Katherine had expected that Johnny's belt, which was very wide and thick, would hurt more, but it was soft - a hippie belt with a brass dolphin for a buckle.  And the sensation as the suede licked her skin - striking first her thigh and then rolling up to kiss the curve of her bottom - was luscious - even better than Johnny's spankings.  After a bit, he hit her again.   The little bite when the tip hit was like a pinch.   It hurt a bit more than his spankings, but that just made the pleasure stronger.  Wonderful.  Something else she'd miss, when Johnny moved on to the next girl. But right now she wanted a hard beating, something that hurt, not pleasure.   She wanted to make Johnny give her a beating that would be a punishment for him.

Johnny said: "Can't I try to answer a question?   About the SNP maybe?"

"Johnny, why is it eight strokes ye mun gi'e me?    Ye owed me six fer yer history prep, but we'll say ye did one.  So how could ye be earning three more?   Ye havna e'en been ta school."

"I did go to school today, Kath.  I was in class when everyone else was out on the playground, listening to anti-war speeches.    I've been doing my history term paper, and today I gave it to Mr. Reskin and he graded it right away, since there was no one else in class."

"So how was that only three strokes?"

"Well, it was, um, ..."

"Johnny!   Tell me!    What grade did ye get - on yer history term paper?"

"It was, um, ah, A+.   But Mr. Reskin said it wasn't perfect or anything, just 97/100.  He did say it was - um - well he said it was, uh, um - that he thought I should send it to a mag... - um, uh - uh - I mean ...  Well anyway, he didn't say it was perfect.  So three strokes.   But, Kath, I cant!  I can't keep it below ten strokes a week, it's impossible, and that's - well I can't, that's all..  I can't hit you ten times every week.   I don't understand why you're doing this to me.   Why are you punishing me by making me hit you?"

"Ninety-seven!    Yer history term paper got ninety-fucking-seven!   Johnny, I don't get ninety-seven from Mr. Reskin.   Nobody gets ninety-bloody-seven from Mr. Reskin.  Yer a bloody genius!   Tell me what he said, Johnny."

"I tried.   I worked hard.  Isn't it enough?    He said it was, um,  that it was - the, um, well he said it was - uh - the best thing on the Civil War he's - um - but I don't think he meant - um.    How could it be the best he's ever ....   Kath, PLEASE!     I can't beat you.  I can't."

"Just forget it, then.   Dinna beat me.   Leave me alone.  What de ye need me for, genius?"

But for that, Johnny gave her a vicious stroke with his belt, the first one that day that was really hard.   The first one he'd ever given her that was hard.  Then he started laying in to her even harder, pounding away at her arse as he walked around her and smashed into it from all directions, not counting strokes.   It really hurt - this was the beating Katherine had wanted to make him give her, the hard beating that would be pain and not pleasure; his punishment.    But it was pleasure, even so, because it was Johnny.  Or rather, not pleasure, but it was a pain that satisfied.  She took a wee keek a' his cock.   He seemed to be stopping, but she wished he would do more  - she knew her bottom was dark red and striped, but she wanted it darker, more striped, down her legs and between her thighs.  Because she knew -  it had to be true - that Johnny got turned on by a girl's red striped bottom.   She had a longing, a need, a lust, for more whipping - for more turning him on by the sight of her bottom, at any cost.    But he stopped.  Johnny lifted her up so he could look in her face.

"Was that what you wanted, Kath?   Tell me if that was what you wanted?"

"I scalded you on purpose, Johnny.   You were angry - but only for little while.  I like it fine when ye get angry.   But it dinna e'en last from one room inta th'other.  I dinna want ye to need my permission to whip me, I want ye to want ta do it.   And I nae want mak ye do yer own damn prep any MORE!"

"You want me - me! - to be the daddy?   But I'm just an idiot - I'm a little boy.  You're the grown-up."

"You are not an idiot, Johnny.   And you are definitely not a little boy.  But I don't care who's the grown-up and who's not.   I get whipped by a grown-up.   I want you to whip me because ye canna spank hard enough.   I want you to lose your temper and beat the tar out o' me - and no ask me 'Is that what ye wanted, Kath?'.  Dinna ye like makin' my ass red?"

"I hope you will drive Miss Ramsay home, Mr. Denson.   Good-night."

Johnny grabbed his tear-gass drenched clothes, and his shoes, and walked naked and barefoot out the front door.    His tadger was so far from aroused it had shrunk up into his belly.


       
  TOP       XIII.   ALLEMANDE:  oboe 
Mr. P. Johnson Dingle, or as the kids called him behind his back, the Dongle, was a good math teacher.

And his best skill was, that he could tell whether a child understood or not, by the look in the eyes.   So he was not as surprised as others might have been, when the geometry homework Johnny Nunes turned in, was perfect.

But he was not a good man.

When he held up Johnny's paper, and praised him in front of the class, he could see the embarrassment in the boy's eyes.    He called Johnny up to the board - and was rewarded by a look of such terror, as would bring joy to the most evil heart.    He asked Johnny to prove that the angle bisectors of a triangle must intersect.

Johnny drew a triangle and drew in the three bisectors, showing them not quite intersecting, and tried to think of what to do next.   The Dongle smiled, and thought of questions to ask that would make Johnny squirm - cry even.   This would be a triumph - the most popular, the most beautiful boy in the school, reduced to tears.  Serve him right for turning in a perfect homework paper.  But then Johnny erased one line.   He marked the other two lines as angle bisectors, and drew back in the third line - intersecting the other two this time, but not shown as bisecting its angle.

"Draw two angle bisectors.   Draw the line from the other vertex to the point of intersection.   If we can prove that this line, which does intersect, is a bisector, then we will have proved that the bisector, intersects."

It was the answer - once you had that, the rest was just adding and subtracting angles.    And Johnny knew it was the answer.  And Mr. Dingle knew that Johnny knew.     He could see the boy's thoughts - see them as the eyes flickered from point to point  - the sum of the angles of a triangle - he has that - but does he have? - yes, similar triangles - yes he sees that - the boy had it all.  And the class understood Johnny's explanation, and they were interested - as they never were in the Dongle's proofs.   It was total, devastating, defeat - the teacher was crushed and the boy had triumphed.   But the look in his eyes was not triumph.   Mr. Dingle thought that in a year of passing out 8s, he had never seen such misery in a child's eyes.

Johnny's triumph was news, and Saul Levin told Katherine Ramsay about it in fourth period English.    She turned around to look at Johnny.   He had been staring at her; he blushed and looked away.     Mr. Alvarez also got a chance to glance through the homework on his desk - Johnny's essay caught his eye.   It was quite good, certainly A or A+, and it made Mr. Alvarez very sad.   He assumed the rich man's stupid son had paid someone to do his homework.   He did not call on Johnny, to ask him questions to prove he could not possibly have written the essay himself, because he was a kind and forgiving man.   And because he was able to read nothing, nothing at all, in his students' eyes.

That was the day the final report cards of the school year were handed out.    Katherine's was straight A's, with one 8.  It should have been two 8s, but one had been mysteriously eaten by the new IBM machine downtown that was supposed to make everything more efficient.     Kath looked at the card and tucked it away without a smile - since her friend Nancy Bickerson was watching her face.   Then Nancy opened her own card.   Nancy tried hard not to show anything on her face, either.

Nancy said: "Johnny Nunes sat next to Betsy Azerkarian at lunch yesterday.    And he's on speaking terms with her brother George again.  I just thought you should know that."

After school Johnny was waiting by the playground gate.

"Hello, Johnny."

He did not say anything.  It was Friday and he had not spoken to her since that time at Mr. Denson's, ten days ago.  He had barely spoken a word to anyone in school, and there were dark bags under his eyes.   She sighed, and started for home, and he walked behind her, saying nothing.   About six blocks from school, a car horn honked, and they looked - it was James Denson.

"Johnny, Katherine!"

They went over.   "Johnny, do you remember Willie Washington - a mechanic at your dad's place?"

"I know a mechanic called Willie.   A short black man with big ears."

"He's in the hospital.   He's been crossing the picket line, and some boys beat him up last night.   I don't know how bad it is.    But I think it might be - bad.   Look, I didn't want this to happen.   But it's going to get worse.   Your Dad's got the goons in already, and he's going to bring in scabs - busloads of them, from Fresno or somewhere."

"What can I do about it?"

"Look - I'm blocking traffic.   Get in."

"I need ta get home, Mr. Denson.   It's Johnny ye need ta talk to."

"Please Miss Ramsay, Johnny will want you."

"He doesna want me."   And Katherine went back to the sidewalk.   Cars were honking.   Johnny got into the car, and they drove off.   Katherine continued walking.   About a block from home, Mr. Denson's car pulled up, and Johnny got out.   He stepped into place, behind her.   But she didn't start walking.

"So yer no going to hospital?"   Johnny wasn't talking to her - hadn't said a word for ten days.   So she knew he wasn't going to answer, just stare at her the way he did, and she wasn't going to put up with it.   But he did answer.

"Well, I don't really know him - I would just see him around the dealership.  And I think it's only family they're letting in to see him now."

"So what did Jimmy want?"

"He wants - but I don't know what to do about it.  Anyway I have time to do this first."

"Do what?"

"Get a licking for my report card - what did you think I was doing?"

"I don't think you need a whipping for bad grades, Johnny.   I've heard you do really well in all your classes, now."

"At least one person in your family isn't crazy!   I earned these bad grades, and I pay for them.   My ass pays for them, not someone else's.   You'd get a licking - wouldn't you?  You'd get a whipping if you got bad grades?   No one's ever cared enough to whip me before."

"Johnny, ye got 61 on that geometry exam : I saw ye write it down in yer book.  Sixty-one!   And I heard about what ye did in geometry class today - Saul Levin told me.   Smarter than the teacher - that's what Saul said.  And Mr. Reston says he understands General McClellan now, after reading your paper, and he never did before--he said ye proved it.  So tell me Johnny, why did an intelligent lad who worked hard, get bad grades, up to now?   Why did a lad who is smarter than the teacher get 61 in geometry?  Why did a lad who knows everything about the Ci'il War know nothing about Vicksburg?  What was it, Johnny?  Were those spanks you gave yersel' punishment fer yer bad grades?   Or were they reward fer it?"

"I spanked myself as hard as I could, Katherine.  Not hard enough; I know that now.  At least I was trying.   And now I'm going to get a licking that will hurt a whole lot more.   I have the courage to go and ask for it.   And instead of helping me you say I can't do it.  You're not being fair.   You get Daddie's lickings; why can't I?"

"I don't believe it's punishment fer you, Johnny.   Getting a licking - yer just giving yerself a treat, not a punishment.  I think ye need to stop rewarding yerself for screwing up."

"You think I like getting a belting?  I don't!   You're the one!   You liked it when I beat you!   You want me to get angry, whip out my belt and thrash you - like I'm the daddy and you're the little girl.   You make me whip you for my mistakes.  You think that's sexy!"

"Isn't it, for you?   Doesn't it make your tadger shoot up?   And shoot off?"

"Anything to do with you is sexy.  My cock rises listening to you recite the pledge of allegiance."

"I hadn't noticed."

"Yeah, well I'm trying to cut back on masturbating in class.   Yeah, sure it's sexy to whip you, fantastically sexy.   But how am I supposed to be the one who decides if you've been bad?"

"I've heard it before Johnny - you're an idiot - you're a little kid.   But you're not."

"But I never know what to do."

"You did pretty well in the riot."

"I don't know what to do about this - this business with - I mean the thing Jimmy told me about."

"Johnny - ye may want licking but I dinna.   I have to go home noo.  And I dinna want ye asking Daddie for a licking."

"I have to.   I signed in blood."

"Then I want you to break that oath.   Don't come home with me, if yer going to ask Daddie fer a licking."

"I don't mean I signed in blood to ask Daddie for a licking, I mean my blood oath to you.  That I have to give you a stroke for every wrong answer.   I owe you nineteen strokes now.     I've tried, every day I've tried.   I go to your house. every day  I say to myself, João Maria, you need to go in there and give Kath a licking.   But I can't do it.   But today, when I've had a good licking, I think I'll be able to give you yours.   That's why I need one."

"I don't want ye ta get a licking.   And there's nothing good about them."

When they walked into the apartment, Daddie looked at his watch, which he had redeemed from the pawnshop thanks to a tip from a Saudi Arabian sheik, but he did no more than tap it.    Katherine handed over her report card.   When he saw it, he had to turn away his face.   He busied his hands, pointlessly rearranging things on the table.   He couldn't look at his daughter.    His hands encountered a six-pack of beer, and he offered one to Johnny.     Mrs. Ramsay had to stand up and reach for her daughter's report, no one passed it to her.    She read it and sniffed.

Daddie still wasn't looking at his child.  He said: "I suppose yer lad has a fine report as well, K-Kath.  I can see he's very intelligent.  Yer lucky ta ha'e him."

And then Daddie started to cry.   He pulled out his handkerchief.    Mither was crying too.

Johnny passed Daddie his report card.

"Ah that's a little different, that is.   I suppose ye won't be setting doun for a while.    I'm forgetting - your Daddie doesna gi'e you his belt.   That's why ye do so poorly, nae doot.   Our Katherine - of course she's very intelligent - a fine lass - but she's always known that we expected her ta work hard - and she'd feel my belt fine if she dinna."

Mrs. Ramsay said: "And what about when ye dinna work hard, Ramsay?   Who is't gi'es ye the belting?"

"Mom, I think Katherine's lucky to have a Dad who cares.  He's right - I did screw up because nobody punished me.  Daddie, would you - um - never mind."

"I mind ye askin' fer a belting, João Maria.    I think ye should ha'e one fer this report."

Johnny looked at Katherine, who glared back.   He said: "Yes, Daddie."

Mrs. Ramsay said: "Och, it's an unco bad report, Johnny.   But I canna believe ye askin' for the belt fer it!"

"João Maria is the finest lad in America, Woman.  It is nae his fault, if his Daddie dinna know his business."

"Johnny's the only lad in America ye actually know, Ramsay.    He's a fine lad, nae doot, but there's many a body in America that isna such a dunder-heid.    But trust my daughter ta fall i' love wi' the bonnie idjit.   Look who I fell fer.   She looked at her husband with a big smile, and positivly beamed at Katherine and Johnny."

Johnny looked at her with a wild unbelieving hope in his eyes, not able to believe what his ears were hearing.   It was some joke, or some trick of Sots he didn't understand.   Somehow, in Scots, when you said "trust me daughter ta fall i lo'e wi" the bonnie idjit" it must really mean something else.   It couldn't possibly mean  .... could it?  He cast furtive glances at Kath's face, then looked back at Mom's beaming, smiling, face.   Could she mean?   Well, whatever else, Mom was looking forward to the show, with her tongue licking her lips.   She was going to enjoy watching Johhny get a licking he'd aked for himself--a whipping she didna think he'd like.  Well, he'd better get on with it, then.  Johnny stood up, and undid his belt buckle, moving very slowly.   He took a gulp of air, as if he was jumping into the sea, and then in one sudden motion pulled down his trousers and knickers.

Katherine said, "I want to take Johnny's licking for him."

"Away wi ye, ye idjit,  He needs ta tak his own punishment."

"Daddie, I usually get something when I get straight As.   This is what I want."

"Is that fine with you, João Maria?   If yer lass wants to tak yer licks?"

"Of course it's not fine!   I absolutely refuse."

"Ye'r a guid lad t' say it.  But the lass'll have her way."

Mrs. Ramsay raised her fat body from her tattered arm-chair, to give her daugher a kiss on the forehead and a slap on the rump.   She said "Yer a tumshie-heid, ye bauchle wee lass, but I'd a do 't'same - he's sich a bonnie un."  Katherine hugged and kissed her mither, and then bent over the coffee table.     A soap opera on TV, which Mrs. Ramsay had been watching, continued to blare on in the tiny, musty, windowless room.

Katherine had bent over with her skirt on.   Daddie flipped it up to her back, and took out of a drawer the whip he'd made from an old belt - he'd fitted a wooden handle with some American gray tape from the cloak-room at work.   The leather was cut in half, rather than folded, and the ends were split, making four tails.  When he'd made it, he'd given Kath a taste of it, and told her he'd use it hard if she ever dared to kiss a boy.  He kept it in his pants drawer, but he'd never given  her a licking with it, except that taste.   She hadn't dared kiss any boys - and it wasn't as if boys were lining up to kiss her anyway.     There'd been Johnny, of course, but in those days when she was warned against kissing, Johnny had been nothing to her except an unbelievably sexy boy who would blush and stammer and trip and drop his notebook - whenever he got near her.

"Can you at least give her a spanking first - Daddie?"

"You do it, João Maria."

Johnny was aroused - she could tell somehow, without looking.   Just his breath - ragged and raspy.   "Oor Johnnie's got a stonner," she giggled to herself.    She took a keek - he was trying to stuff it into his trousers - with Daddie watching.   It was too stiff to go in, and it got stiffer the more he fiddled with it. With his belt loosely buckled across his belly but his rod, stiff as it could be, sticking out under it, he took a stride over and gave a terrific swat to her cheek.   Hyah - that was much harder than he had ever spanked her.    And he spanked fast.   For the first time, she had a sense of his enormous strength - he was so much bigger than she was - and he did lacrosse as well as track.   In everything he had done till now - every time he had touched her - he had been holding this power in check.  His spanks had been light taps, done to arouse her, while all along he had a giant's strength.
    
But now he was hitting with all his giant's might - doing it to protect her from the pain of the belting to come.
  He shifted position, putting his left hand on her hip, so that he was holding her hips firmly, held between his hand and his front, limp as a ragdoll in his powerful hands.  She was folded over his steel-hard rod.  He took a gulp of air, and started in, spanking more slowly - left - right - left - right.   He was so strong that she was clamped as in a vise, not able to shift a fraction of an inch as the shaking, pounding blows struck.  He spanked her all over, all the places her Daddie would whip - down her legs and between her legs and every inch of her bottom, right into the crack.  And Katherine had a sense - I've been here before.   It was a feeling of running - a feeling of room to run in.  Running with bare feet on stony ground, naked and strong, with Johnny.   The smacks on her inside thighs were like muscles straining, moving her legs as fast as she could go - the pain like her bare feet pounding the ground, running, running together, running exaltation! across a wide windy plain. Having her bottom smacked hard - it felt different, when she wasn't being punished for anything.    When it was Johnny doing it to protect her.  Johnny holding her like he would never let her go. 

But he did stop spanking.   And then came the waiting.  From Daddie, she got the belt even for a B minus.  Every step below that would be more - a lot more.   Just one of Johnny's bad grades - just his D in maths - would be a bad beating.   If Daddie gave her that, and then went on to the next subject, and the next, for every one of Johnny's bad grades - she couldn't take it.   Fortunately, his history mark was B+, because that A+ term essay had outweighed all those bad preps.   But his math mark was D - one week of perfect scores didn't count much against against a whole term of bad ones.  And his recent days of cutting school had showed up as bad conduct marks, too.   What would happen - could she change her mind? - would Daddie let her?   Could she take just maths, and let Johnny take the rest?    But Johnny couldn't take the rest - she was used to it, he wasn't.   Six belt strokes - six! - was a lot to Johnny.  She should at least take half.   More than half.  She would have to take almost all of them.    And Johnny would have to watch.   

Johnny was looking down at his rod.   He had juiced.  She hadn't noticed, but now she could feel it in the hollow of her thigh, where she had been folded over him.  It must have been in that moment - the sudden wonderful moment when in spite of everything - in spite of everything he had said - everything he had done - everything he was! - she had believed somehow they would run hand in hand forever.

 Johnny said: "Mr. Ramsay, sir?"


        
  TOP       XIV.  PRESTO AGITATO:   clavichord  
"Yes, João?"

"If I went to my father, and begged him to give me a licking, and he did it, could you not whip Katherine?   I don't know if he'll do it.  But if he does?   I know I deserve this licking, and I know you've said Katherine can take it for me, but if I get one from my dad - won't that mean there's nothing for Katherine to take?   And could you not whip Katherine now - to give me a chance to ask my Dad?"

Mither said: "Och let him ta do it, Ramsay."

"Aye, gettin' belt fra' yer own Daddie is best."

"O.K.   Um, there's a problem.   I need to talk to Katherine about it."

"In the kitchen with you, then."

"No it's all right.  I'd like you to help too - um - Dad.    Kath, Jim... - uh, I mean - that man we saw, he told me something, and I have to do something about - um - it's about what he told us - about my Dad picking up - oh fuck.     Sorry, Mither.   I guess I can't tell other people about this.    Um.   Katherine, I guess we should go into the kitchen.   Could you please?"

"Go on wi' ye.   We will leave ye two alone.   We auld biddies need ta go - do some'ut."

"Will you come, Katherine - please?   To the street?  Not the kitchen.  Thanks for offering, Dad, but I really do need to talk to her.  I wasn't just trying to get her into the kitchen to um - have intercourse."

Katherine changed out of her school shoes, and grabbed a sweater.   She slipped a couple of condoms from her little stash into her skirt pocket.   And three one-dollar bills.   And the ring - the plain ring that Johnny had tossed her - the ring his mother kept in her make-up box.    She put it on the ring finger of her right hand. 

Johnny didn't talk on the street - he took her to a Chinese place, two blocks away, and got a single order of chop suey to share.   He poured tea into the thick, handle-less cups.   Katherine looked out the window to the motel across the street, and took the ring off her right finger and laid it on the table..

Johnny said: "The whores my father picks up in the longshoremen's bars - he doesn't whip them.   They whip him.   You'd think that would be a whore's dream - a rich man who gives them presents, who doesn't whip them, but wants to be whipped instead.   But it isn't.  Dad can't keep a mistress; Jimmy says they get scared, whipping a rich powerful man.  Dad's current mistress is called Reena - but her real name is Maureen Herb and she's seventeen and comes from Milwaukee.   And Jimm- I mean, James - has talked to her and says she is very, very frightened.    Her pimp is called Drake - Jimmy doesn't know his real name.  He slices girls' faces with a razor.  Some of the boys - teamsters - set up a little plan, and paid Drake to go along.   Reena is going to tie Dad up, as she always does, to whip him.   And blindfold him.  And then the boys are going to come in and beat him with a tire iron until his ass is a bloody pulp.   Make it look like a sexual whipping that got out of hand.    And then they're going to call the cops, and the press.  If he tries to claim it was some men who beat him, and demands an investigation, there'll be plenty of evidence - girls from the bars who'll say Dad picked them up and wanted a whipping.   It'll be a circus in the newspapers.   If he doesn't mention the men, doesn't try to fight this in any way, it will still be bad, because it will still get out that he picked up a girl to whip him, and ended up in the hospital with surgeons stitching his butt back together."

"So you need to warn him.   Stop him going with Reena."

"James trusted me with this.   If they find out he told me, they will kill him."

"But you can still warn your Dad, can't you - can't you trust your Dad not to tell anyone the warning came from Jimmy Denson?"

"I think my Dad's life is at stake.  I think this might kill him.  Or he might kill himself, if the story got out.   And if anyone looks into Dad's background - well, there will be problems.   He's not in this country legally, for one thing, and he - well, there will be a lot of problems if anyone starts investigating him."

"So you have to warn him."

"And let Jimmy take his chances?    Yes I do if it comes to that, if it's my Dad's life.   But I do have a plan.   I thought of it while giving you that spanking.  You won't like it."

"What is it?"

"I want you to give my Dad a whipping."

"I think - Johnny, I think that is brilliant."

"Well there is another problem.   Or maybe it isn't a problem - not a problem for me, anyway.   James told me this, maybe saved my Dad's life, and maybe put his own on the line.   And he wants something in exchange."

"What?"

"He wants me to stop my Dad from bringing in scabs from the Central Valley."

"So the Teamsters win?"

"So there isn't a massacre, he says.    So the strike doesn't get so violent that a lot of people get killed, which Jimmy says will happen if my Dad brings in scabs.  But I can't stop Dad from bringing in the scabs - the replacement workers.   The only possible way would be to tell him about the plot, tell him the warning came from Jimmy Denson, and say Jimmy Denson wants this in exchange.   And that just won't work: Jimmy Denson is the last person on Earth my Dad trusts.   He'll just say Jimmy organized the whole plot - if there is a plot - just so he could 'warn' us about it and win the strike."

"So there is nothing ye can do to get James what he wants."

"And if there's nothing I can do, it's not my problem, unless - "

"What?"

"Unless there's a massacre."


    
  TOP       XV.  PAVANE:  guitar, bass 
"Don't worry, he always comes in here after dealing with the last customer.   He puts the day's DMV paperwork in the safe."

"But if he always comes, why would we pick this place for a secret get-together?"

"Because I'm a tumshie-head."

Johnny's plan was simple enough.   His Daddie would walk in on them in his office at the car dealership, with Johnny naked and tied, with his bottom severely whipped.   Johnny thought this would make his Daddie want a whipping too.   Katherine thought it wasn't much of a plan.

Johnny said: "I don't think we should tell him that we know about the whores - that the whores whip him."

"Why not?   Why shouldn't I say, I know you like being whipped and I'm here to whip you?"

"Because he will be ashamed of it.    When he sees you naked and swinging the whip, whipping me, he's going to want to be whipped.   Any man would get excited; my dad's going to go crazy.  I can't believe one man in a hundred could see you naked and say no.  Dad'll figure out some way to get his pants down and bent over - don't worry about that part.   But if he thinks we know about him being whipped by whores, he'll be too ashamed to want to face us.   I think he'll be much more ashamed of being whipped, than if he whipped the whores instead."

"And if I do whip him, and then he goes to Reena?   For sex?   It isn't only whippings she gives him."

"If you're thinking what I think you're thinking - I absolutely won't allow it."

"So if he leaves, and you think he's going to Reena?"

"Plan B.   We tell him about the warning from James.   And I beg him not to go on my knees."

"I think we need to make plan A work."

Katherine undressed - Johnny was naked already.   She slipped her dress and knickers down in one go and dropped them in a pile, so Johnny wouldn't notice the Tampax pad.

"Well we better start then.  I don't think my Dad just likes a little light spanking with sex like I do.   It needs to be a serious whipping, and we need to make him see it's serious.  I want my ass pointed right at the door when he opens it - and, Katherine, I don't care how much this hurts."

She tied Johnny's wrists to the legs of his Daddie's desk.  Johnny had to help her with the knots.   There wasn't anything useful to tie his ankles to.   Johnny's belt was awkward in her hand, but she gave his behind some good wallops.   It was fun - and very loud.

Johnny said: "You might as well try pinching me to death.   Try some loops of the clothesline."

Katherine's arm got rather tired after a few strokes with loops of clothesline.

"That hurts, if possible, even less than the belt.  Try putting some knots in."

The knots produced some barely visible red spots.

"Use my pocket-knife.   Make some cuts - get blood on the whip."

"If your Daddy wants to be whipped till he bleeds, he's not going to be satisfied with being cut by a knife."

"Well, find something - I'm tied up."

Katherine found a yardstick in the closet.   It wasn't very strong, but it had a brass ferule running down the edge.  Not much less sharp than Johnny's pocketknife.    Katherine tried it.

"Hard, dammit!  This is important."

"Johnny, you're bleeding."

"Well that's the point, isn't it?   Do the cuts all criss-cross.   Make it look good."

"It looks like hamburger."

"I'd like to have an erection when Dad walks in."

"I can reach under you, I guess."

"I can't seem to get my cock up with my hands tied.   Can you try, please?"

Johnny raised himself to his knees, and Katherine lay on her back and slid under him, to use her mouth instead of her hand.    There was a fair amount of blood on the floor and it got all over her hair - she was naked, so at least she didn't get blood on her school clothes.   It was awkward - she had to raise herself a bit to get the thing in her mouth - Johnny was very short when he was soft.   But he got longer as he began, slowly, to swell and stiffen.

"Oh! excuse me." - and the door slammed.

"That was my Dad!"

"Now what?"

"Go after him - tell him I want to talk to him."

There was no one in the corridor.   Katherine came back into the room.

"You didn't go look for him?"

"Johnny, I'm not just naked - I'm naked and covered with blood.   I can't go running around the car dealership like this - I thought the plan was to protect your father's reputation, not get him sent to jail."

"Fuck it.   For all we know he'll leave here, and go pick up his whore."

"I can't believe he found two naked people fucking in his office and just left."

"Not two naked people - his son and his son's girl."

"You think he recognized your butt?  Believe me Johnny your mother couldn't recognize it."

"Se's never seen my butt.   But no one else has a key to this office.   Well, no one else who is stupid enough to fuck in it has a key to his office.  He knows it was me.   Young and stupid and with red hair - who else is he going to think of?   Untie me - you can't run around naked but - Yah-OOMPH."

Johnny had freed himself - he had lifted the massive oak desk with his lower jaw.   He slipped the loops of clothesline off the bottoms of the desk legs.    And he was out the door like a runner from the starting block.

Mr. Nunes came back dragging Johnny, who was a head taller and in much, much better physical condition, by the ear.  

"You can't run around my dealership like that - and -   Mãe de Deus! - it looks like the St. Valentine's day massacre in here."

"I wouldn't let her stop.  A hundred strokes for every bad grade.   But we needed a better whip."

"What are you talking about?"

"I made her whip me for my report card - I'm doing badly in school and you wouldn't help."

"What do you mean I wouldn't?   You haven't asked me for any help!"

"You never even asked to see my report card!   I figured you didn't care about me."

"I work my fingers to the bone for you and your mother."

"Well I hear different, Dad - I know about all those girls you take to hotel rooms - a new one every month and some of them younger than me!   You whip girls who aren't even legal.   San Quentin quail!"

"Johnny your mother and I -"

"Can it, Dad! - I know about Gallagher's and The Captain's Locker and all the other bars you go to in China Basin.  I know everything.   I know what kind of girl you pick up - I know you pick up girls and whip them - and you refuse to whip your own wife and son!"

"Refuse to whip you?"

"I've wanted you to be a real dad all my life.  Weren't you listening?  But Mom's the one you're really mean to - she wants you to whip her even more than she wants sex."

"She said that to you?   She wants sex?"

"No of course not - I overheard her talking to one of her girlfriends - O.K. I spied on her when she was on the phone."

"She said she wants sex?    With me?"

"I only heard half the conversation.  She talked about the husband - her girlfriend's husband I mean - that he took his hand to her.   But it was real obvious what she meant - and what she wanted.   Mom said right out she wished she had a man like that.   It's what I want too.   That you should take a hand to me."  

"Johnny your mother can't stand me to touch her.   She may want a man to beat her, but not me.   In fact I'm sure she has a man, and he probably does beat her, but it isn't me.  She calls me scum.  She says I'm like something in the skuppers of a fishing boat.    Her boyfriend, well he is a lawyer.    But his dad was a just an Armenian grocer.   But I'm not good enough for her.    A millionare isn't good enough for her."

"She - well, I don't know what she thinks, but she doesn't not care about you, Dad.   She says 'your father' to me in a funny voice, like crying.  I think she doesn't like to look at me because I look like you.   And maybe, when she said that about the boat, she just wanted to make you so mad you would half kill her.   Katherine does that to me.   She won't just ask for a whipping when she wants one, she tricks me into it.   She doesn't like to whip me - I had to buy her a plate of chop suey before she'd agree to do it."

"A plate of chop suey?"

"Will you do the rest of my whipping?   She won't do any more and I still have two hundred strokes to go.  She just wants to fuck all the time.  Or get whipped - she probably even wants a whipping from you."

"You shouldn't have used something so sharp."

"I can take it.  So you'll do it?   Dad, that is so cool!  The belt didn't hurt enough.   This has to really really hurt.   What do you use on the whores?   You must know all about whipping.   You must have all kinds of really cool whips and stuff.  Handcuffs and chains.  And you never let me have anything.  Not even a spanking!"

"Johnny, your mother was the one who said you should never be spanked.   She couldn't bear to think about you being hit."

"Couldn't bear to think about me at all, she meant.   You shouldn't have let her do it.   But at least you can make up for it now - my report card is in my pants pocket.   And I want a whipping - the belt didn't hurt enough.   Even the yardstick didn't hurt enough.   Do you ever use boiling oil?"

"A sharp thing like this yardstick doesn't hurt much.   Something really sharp, like a razor, draws a lot of blood but hardly hurts at all.   That Opus Dei priest, Escrivá, who whips himself with razor blades - splatters blood all over the place, but real masochists know it hurts less than an English school caning."

"I'm not a masochist, Dad.   I don't enjoy this.  I just think I should be punished when I screw up like any other boy.   Even if it was only your hand, that would be something.  Dad, please, do it with your hand.   A spanking from my dad over his knee.   I used to dream about it.   I used to look at your hands a lot, when you still came home."

"You'll want something that hurts more than my hand.   This belt doesn't hurt a lot because it is so wide and soft.    And I see you tried knotted rope, but it is too light.  And it's soft - cotton clothesline.  A narrow stiff strand - or better yet a lot of them at once, hurts more."

"It should be something I won't forget for all of next semester, whenever I think of goofing off instead of studying.   And dad, after you punish me, could we ..."

"What?"

"... um, nothing."

Mr. Nunes opened the big cabinet safe, and took out a cashbox, and opened it with a key he kept in a zipper compartment of his belt.   He took out and uncoiled two multi-tailed whips.  The shorter one had knotted tails.

Johnny said: "Those look spectacular, Dad.   How many lashes can the whores take?   I want a hundred.  Two hundred.  I want you to tie me up and keep whipping even if I beg you to stop."

Johnny lay down in the place he had been tied.  He put his wrists next to the desk legs, ready for tying.

"I can't whip you when you've been cut like this.   It might stop the cuts from healing - make scars."

"I have scars on my butt already."

"Not from me."

"Mr. Nunes?   Can I take the whipping for Johnny?   He took one for me.   My Daddie was going to whip me, but Johnny said it had been his fault."

"And is it your fault, Miss Katherine, that my son has such a shameful report card?"

"Och.  No.   But I disna think Johnny is sich a dunder-heid - let me tell ye about what he did in maths today."

"I know he is not a dund-... that he is not stupid.  That is why it is shameful.   Otherwise, it would only be sad."

"But he did take a whipping for me, Mr. Nunes, so I be ta tak one fer him."

"I don't think it's your fault he does so badly in school, Miss.   But it is mine."

"Does tha' mean ye want to tak Johnny's whipping, Mr. Nunes?"

"No."

"Och, then will ye whip me?   I do want ta take Johnny's whipping fer him."

"But Kath, I don't want you to take my whipping."

"Shut up ye, Johnny - neither o' us cares.    Wha' ye want aint got nowt ta do wi' it."

Katherine lay down beside Johnny, who was still on the floor with his wrists touching the desk legs.    Mr. Nunes had the long whip in his hand, but it was still coiled and he didn't do anything.   Johnny stood up and sighed, and picked up the short knotted whip, and stepped into position to bring it down across Katherine's arse.    He waited only a moment, took a deep breath, and began.   

Katherine screamed.   It had happened too fast and she wasn't ready!  The pain took her into another world - the knotted, multi-tail whip was like nine strokes of her daddie's belt in one blow.

But there was only that one blow.

It took her a while to understand what had happened; the pain had made her mind fuzzy, and the sounds she heard bounced about and echoed in her brain.   But gradually she put the sound together in her head.   Mr. Nunes had shouted "Stop!" as the stroke fell.     It seemed Johnny was indeed going to stop - he looked at his daddie obediently, worshipfully.   Katherine waited for a while; then she got up.

Mr. Nunes, slowly and carefully, had taken off his jacket and tie, and was unbuttoning his shirt.   He pulled out the desk chair to untie his shoes.    He made a neat pile of his clothes, even folding his socks and his knickers.   He didn't fold his suit, but hung it on hangers in the closet - using a special hanger for the trousers, which hung them upside down.  Quite naked, he locked the office door.  He was a good-looking man in a suit, but naked Katherine found him repulsive - next to the beautiful muscular naked body of his son, he was a slug.   Johnny, standing stiff with respect, and looking everywhere but at the naked body of his progenitor, handed her the whip.

Mr. Nunes got down on his hands and knees - he didn't lay down on the floor like she and Johnny had.   And he was pointing the other way, facing the door - she had to walk around him.   Johnny moved to where he could see his father's arse, and stood like a soldier at attention.   In spite of what Jimmy had said, Katherine didn't think the son looked much like his father, now she had both Nunes men naked in front of her and could compare them.   Johnny looked more like his mother, really - .   he got his height from her; and his beautiful chestnut hair.  The two penises were nothing alike; the older Mr. Nunes had a gigantic one.   But their butts were the same - there were six stripes of bad bruise across Mr. Nunes's backside - he had been caned, very hard, recently. 

Katherine said: "Mr Nunes, this is Johnny's whipping fer his report card, and we ha'e decided he sha' ha'e twa hundred strokes.   When we said tha' we dinna ken it would be wi' such a whip as this - but we ha'e the whip noo, and the number will be no less.   Twa hundred strokes wi' this whip.  You dinna have to take 'em all, but I will take any ye do not.   I willna let Johnny tak a single one, Mr. Nunes, whate'er he says."

"I understand.   I will take them all."

Katherine swung the whip as hard as she could, and Mr. Nunes sobbed.    Her own arse was still on fire from just one stroke, and she whipped hard.   The pain must be fantastic.  It didn't look like Mr. Nunes was feeling sexy at all, and his penis was so long she could see the end of it, without having to duck her head and look under.  It was limp.   Johnny stared, rigid as a bronze statue, his tadger shrunk and pulled into his body.     He flinched as each stroke fell.    Mr. Nunes lifted his butt high for them and moaned.    The pain had gotten to be so much it was making him writhe.

After about a dozen strokes, Mr. Nunes said: "Johnny - I want it to be Johnny."

Feeling dismissed, Katherine let fly with one last really wild swing.   Then she gave the whip to Johnny.

Mr. Nunes, the masochist, seemed to be enjoying his whipping a lot less than Johnny had liked his.   She said : "Do you want me to wank you?  Jerk you off?"

"Who, me?"

"Don't you like it, when you get a whipping?"

"No, I - um - no."

"Did ye no ha'e intercourse after ye got thon caning?"

"What - uh, I - uh - that is -    Yes.  Please.   I do want it."

Katherine slid her head under him, as she had with Johnny.   But the father's soft penis dangled almost to the floor when he was on hands and knees.   Something else Johnny had not inherited.

She said: "Don't stop whipping him, Johnny.   You'll want your turn later, won't you, when your bottom heals?    Getting whipped by your Daddie while I do you underneath?   Don't mind if the whip goes a bit wild and catch me on me lugs -- I'm sucking a cock, remember."

Johnny dropped the whip and picked up his shirt and pants.  He walked out the door.

Mr. Nunes said : "He's been doing that ever since he learned to walk.   He knows how angry it makes me.   If he wants whippings we've got about sixteen years of them to catch up on.  I can remember things he did that I'd like to whip him for, for days - once he went skateboarding naked!"    Katherine continued to suck on his cock while he talked.

Sex with the older Mr. Nunes was everything sex with Johnny wasn't.   He didn't fumble getting rubber johnnies out of wrappers.   He didn't smash into her like a steam hammer when she wasn't ready, or brush her like a butterfly when she needed a good hard whack.  He didn't juice all over the floor when she hadn't even started.  He didn't need to close his eyes and think of somewhere else, just to keep his tadger up, or stare into space with a big smirk on his face, in a world of his own.   He was skilled, practiced, considerate.  And his penis was enormous.  He was good at showing his pleasure, and his capacity to get pleasure from her touch made sex steaming hot - a caress caused him so much pleasure it made him lust uncontrolably for a harder caress, a slap, a bite, a stroke with the whip.  When his eyes looked at her tits, she felt sexy.  She felt like a slut, and wanted to pleasure him like his whores did.  When he opened the packet of the rubber johnny, she asked: "Don't you want to fuck me without that until you are about to juice?"

"Not unless you want to get pregnant - that's almost sure-fire."

And he knew all sorts of things about making her feel hot.   His kissing was specatcular - and her mouth was just where he started.   He kissed and caressed and nibbled her all over, and hugged, and nuzzled her ears, and he talked - the sexiest thing he did with his mouth was talk - he whispered, shouted, whimpered, begged, preached.    And he even, amazingly, listened.  Paid attention to her.  Asked her to do things for him and asked what she wanted, told her how sexy she was and how horny she made him feel.  Stuff Johnny had never learned from Masters and Johnson.   It was an education.   But there was one really important way that this was different from sex with Johnny.

It was heartless.

And there was something else.   She shouldn't have been having sex on this day at all.   Shouldn't have been able to.   But her tampax had been as white as a virgin's conscience.  When she and Johnny had fucked, the first time, they had both thought the only way to get her pregnant was to pump all of his juice deep into her, but she knew better, now.   Almost sure-fire, Mr. Nunes had said, to fuck without a condom until the man was ready to shoot.  And today - beyond any argument - beyond any shadow of a doubt - Katherine was late.


          
  TOP       XVI.  PARTITA:  baritone  
She didn't go home.

Mr. Nunes - and he liked being called Mr. Nunes - had given her one hundred dollars.   And she had promised to come to the dealership again tomorrow.

"But it won't be a C-note every time,"  he had said.

"I understand."    She hadn't, actually.   She supposed C-note had something to do with music.   She had heard it was possible to get rid of a baby in Chinatown for a hundred dollars, but had no idea how to go about it.   She went to Chinatown and knocked on a door in an alley.   No one answered.

And so, after walking miles - very steep miles - all the way across San Francisco in the middle of the night, she rang the doorbell of a little Spanish stucco on Ulloa street.    It took several rings before Mr. Denson answered the door in his bathrobe.

"You will have to marry Johnny, of course."

He had made coffee, and they were sitting at the kitchen table.     Somehow it made Katherine feel a little better that the fastidious James Denson had left his washing-up to do in the morning.   She had done it while he made the coffee.

He was, it turned out, Catholic.    A very lapsed, bitter Catholic who didn't go to confession, who hated priests.   A Catholic who kept rubber johnnies in his bedside table, who picked up rent boys on the street.   But a Catholic all the same.  When she said "get rid o' it" he thought she meant adoption.   Abortion didn't even occur to him, and Katherine didn't mention she had gone looking for one.    He was against adoption as well.

He told her about growing up in an orphanage, about a monk who pulled boys out of bed in the middle of the night, to whip them for their lewd thoughts. 

"We were all sinners; the Bible said so, and so they didn't need to catch us at anything, to whip us; the whipping spared us even worse pain in Purgatory.   If we said we didn't have any lewd thoughts, we were whipped for lying - fair enough in my case, I was lying.   I did have lewd thoughts, from as early as I can remember.   But I got a lot better at having lewd thoughts from having to tell Brother Paul about them."

"Thon's horrid."

"Well yes, it was.    But every night I hoped it would be me."

"And did he ...?   Is that why you like boys?"

"Brother Paul never did anything like that.    But I wanted him to - that's what my lewd thoughts were about - about a naked boy being whipped in a monk's cell.     And about the monk's penis ... I didn't know what penises were for, exactly, so the boy in my stories kissed the monk's penis, but there was nothing more than that.    He said I was lying - accusing him of things."

"'Ye ... och, thon's horrid.    Horrid.   Why did he think ye were lying?   A wee lad talking o' a man's penis?"

"Oh - I wasn't a wee lad - I'm talking about when I was fourteen.   Maybe you can't believe a fourteen year old didn't understand about sex, but I didn't.   I really didn't have the least idea.  They didn't teach us in the orphange and the other boys - well, they knew I was different.    Boys in an orphange play sex games, Katherine, but they only play with real boys, not with fags.   No one hates fags like boys in an orphanage who have to have sex with each other."

"Was it just you, or did Brother Paul whip all the boys?"

"I got so jealous if Brother Paul whipped another boy.   I made up lewd thoughts to tell and be whipped for them.   I can see now it was wrong, what he did, but at that time I thought it was me, that I deserved it.   They weren't even sexual, those stories I made up; I couldn't have described a sex act to him because I didn't know any.   So I told him I thought of him hugging me, fondling me, wrestling with me, the way I saw pappas play with their boys in the park, and he said those were wicked thoughts, because in my fantasies of him tussling with me like a son, we were naked, and so we touched each other's penises, and we kissed all over.   All over."

"My Daddie disna hug me i' the skuddy, but I wouldna think it wicked if he did."

"It was wicked because he was a monk.   He never touched me, sexually, Katherine; don't get the wrong idea.   The monks didn't even kiss our foreheads - didn't muss up our hair.   We were Italian - I mean the orphanage was in an Italian neighborhood, and it got Catholic babies who must have been mostly Italian.  Nobody is more physical than an  Italian pappa with his boy.  We used to watch out the orphanage windows.  Hugs and kisses from Mamma, but when a boy saw Pappa coming he pushed away from Mamma and went running, shouting 'Pappa, Pappa!' and you'd see Pappa pretend to be cross, and give his young scamp a swat on the seat of the pants, and they'd tussle, roughly.   Mamma would call a boy "Ducli bambino" but with Pappa it was, 'You scamp!  You wicked devil!  Diabalol'   And a smacking.  Hard spanks in little shorts, but in fun, and other rough stuff too.   The boys loved it.

"We watched those Pappas out the window all the time at the orphanage, and any one of those Italian men could have been my pappa, Katherine.   Some Italian girl must have missed her period, and they got rid of the problem, which was me, and he went on with his life, and got married, and had boys that he wrestled with in the park, while I watched them from the orphanage window.   You can't give up your child for adoption, Katherine.

"But ..."

James wasn't listening to her; his eyes were glazed, deep in the past.   "Italian boys fight, Katherine - they punch each other - and then they make up and kiss - Italian boys kiss.   Italian boys play spanking games - there's one they call "post a letter."   And stickball - sliding to a base on the concrete - the monks didn't like us to play rough, but those street urchins were tough!   They didn't mind scraping the skin off their sides, to win!   Italian men touch their own testicles a lot, through their pants - watch and you'll see.  And when they tussle with their boys, they grab the boy's asses - and the boys will punch Pappa in the crotch, and run away to be chased.   And the play smackings when they're caught are pretty rough, but the boys laugh ..."

Jimmy's eyes were staring dreamily into space.

"I'm sure I'm Italian, Katherine, but they picked me a name from the phone book.   An American name : James Denson.   Even Brother Paul - Giancarlo Rossi was his real name - he thought I should have a good American name, that it would do me good later in life.   But I'm Italian.   I mean I'm sure I was born Italian - I'm not really Itallian, becasue I never learned it.  I don't speak a word.  If I tried to grope my own balls in public I couldn't.   I can't stand garlic.   I'm not Italian, not really. It's like the whole neigborhood shoved me out, not just Mamma and Pappa.   All those little Rossis and Capras and Raggazinos, kissed and cuddled and smacked and given their pappa's name.   Playing rough Italian games and learning earthy Italian slang.  Learning to like spicy food and herbs and garlic so strong you could smell Italian cooking for blocks.  There was no spice in the orphanage food.  If you give up your child for adoption, Katherine, he won't be Nunes or Ramsay.    He won't be Azorean and he won't be Scottish.   He won't love piri-piri sauce or Bovril.  He won't be anything in particular.   He won't be connected.  Does he deserve that?"

"But Mr. Denson, he might be loved.  It might be a family, not an orphanage.   It doesn't have to be like Brother Paul."

"Brother Paul did love me, he loved me best.    I was the lucky one.  But there's more than love - I'm talking about touch, about connection.    Touch that doesn't start by taking the baby in your womb and giving it away.    If a baby needs to be adopted, then it's great that someone will take it in and love it - and I'm sure the love is the same.    But this  is the baby that's inside of you - part of you!  Give up this baby - and then maybe, when it's more convenient, you might adopt one - sure, you'll love that other baby with all your heart, but there's not the same connection.  Not flesh of your flesh.   It's hard for me to touch, Katherine.   You don't know what it does to you, to be whipped, night after night, for every thought of touch, every thought of kissing, every thought of holding a man in your arms."

"Yes, I do."

"No, you can't, unless it's happened to you.   Hold on to your baby - hold on tight and never let go.   It will be all right; I promise."

"It canna be.   Johnny willna want a babe."

"I don't think you two will have a good life.  I cant't believe you will - you don't talk.   Johnny told me you had rejected him - that you weren't even kind about it."

"Och I ne'er said nowt like that - he said ...."

"I don't want to hear it!.   Just believe me: there is no doubt whatsoever - no doubt whatsoever - that Johnny will be happy about this."

"Happy I've a puddin' i' the oven?"

"He'll think - and I think so too -  that it means you'll get married.   That is, if you really are pregnant.  Being a few days late doesn't mean as much as you seem to think it does.   You should get a test to make sure."

"I willna force myself on him; make him ta marry me - and using a bairn ta do it.   I willna saddle him with a wee-un as'll wreck his life."

"I don't understand you.   Why are you wearing his ring?"

"This?   Och is just some'ut we borrowed a' his mither."

"That ring must have belonged to Mama Nunes - Johnny's grandmother.  It's a wedding ring."

"But it's copper!"

"It's brass.  It was enameled originally; Toledo enamel - look on the inside.  The enamel's why it doesn't turn your finger green.   A lot of Portuguese fish-wives had enameled brass wedding rings - they couldn't afford gold."

"Johnny just tossed it to me - he said, 'see if this fits'."

"I suppose men in his family have been giving that ring away for generations, and then keeping it in the family by marrying the girl."

"He tossed it to me like it was nothing."

"Would you have taken it - as a promise of marriage?    Do you love him?"

"Love?    I canna say I lo'e him.    He's the most handsome boy in ... San Francisco.   Girls wi' do it.   They let thon bonnie lads ha'e their ways wi' them ..."

"Katherine, it's a simple question.   If Johnny asked you to marry him, would you say yes or no?"

"If Johnny proposed - but that's ridiculous - but if he had?  No, that's impossible ..."

"He must have thought that by getting you to take the ring, without knowing what it was, it would somehow make you end up marrying him."

"Well he's gi'e me some'ut else ta mak me do tha'.   But I canna possibly tell him."

"He has to know, Katherine.  I won't keep that sort of secret.  And Johnny won't think  it wrecks his life."

"So you'll tell him?    Tell Johnny he's maybe a father?"

"Johnny wants to have a father so much it's painful to watch.   What do you think he will do, when I tell him he might be a father?    Last night he ..."

"Last night?!"

"Yeah, Johnny's been coming to see me.   You didn't know?  I help him with his school work, and we ..."

"What?"

"Katherine.   I ...     What can I say?   Every night - I don't sleep very well - I think I'm back in the orphanage.   I  have to go to Brother Paul.   Johnny makes up sins for his confession too, so he understtod about that part.   But his penance is just prayers, and not as many of those as he wants.   But Johnny's priest is a good man, I think ... he would never ... ah-unhh, .... sorry, I can't, I'm back with ... unh ... sorry ... it's just, just ... whipped hard, night after night, for years and years - you don't know what that does to you."

"I do know, James.    Don't cry."

"And Kath, so many nights, when I have those nightmares, there's been a boy in my bed.   A boy's hand on my dick.   His mouth on my nipple.  And they were so willing, Katherine.    Desperately willing.   And...  well ...  um.     That's what I needed to tell you."

"What does it have ta do wi' me?"

"Because last night, the boy was Johnny."

"Johnny had sex with you?"

"We slept together.  Naked, but with no sex.   He wanted to be held in my arms, and to call me 'Dad.'  And when I woke up from a dream, that I was in my dad's bed - and I swear I was asleep ... my mouth was on Johnny's cock."

"He let you?"

"He was awake.   His screaming woke me up - you must know what Johnny's like when he comes.    He was pushing me away with his hands, but at the same time his body arched to get his cock back into my mouth.    And afterwards he wanted to be beaten for it with my leather reform school paddle."

"And did ye skelp him?"

"Here is the paddle."

"Is this blood?    Johnny's blood?   You beat him bloody?"

"My blood, Katherine.   Mine!"

"Johnny did this?   But he can't.   He can't even belt me."

"He talked to me about that.   Why did you try to make him hit you?"

"There didna seem nae point in me belting him.   He likes it to much."

"If you wanted to punish him, you found a way to do it.   You made him hurt the thing he loves most.   You."

"But he hated it."

"It worked, didn't it?    You wanted him to do better in school - and he has."

"But he hates it - I think he hates me."

"You found a way to punish him that really hurt him - did you think he was going to like it?"

"But how do you do it?   How did you get him to punish you."

"I needed a father more than he does."

"But I tried to make him be a Dad!   He hated it.   He couldna thole it."

"I hope your baby is born with an asbestos rear end, Katherine, but she'll never feel unconnected.    She'll never be less than the focus of Johnny's life, more than she wants, probably, if she's like her mother.  She will know every second that she is more important to Johnny than his own life.  He was born to be a dad--although he's a bit to fond of the paddle himself to go light when he's swinging one.  .  'Saddle him with a child.'!    'Saddle' Johnny?    Do you two not understand each other even a little?"

"So you mean if I'm pregnant, he'll love his child, and I can go along for the ride." 

"Katherine!   Oh the hell with it.    I'll just get you two together and stand back - I can't explain you to each other.    What I will do is ask Johnny what he thinks about marrying you.   And I will tell you what he says.   But you have to tell him about the baby.  I mean, tell him you are late and that there could be a baby.  You have to tell him so you can see his face.  You can see if he thinks it's a bit of a nuisance.   But I think you will see - happiness.   Joy out of despair.   It will be so obvious that even you will believe it.   I'll go now.   No - that won't work - I can't be seen going to that house.   You phone him, tell him I'll meet him at - at the cross on Mt. Davidson, at 7:30 this morning.      I 'll ask him - no that won't work, either.   I can't ask him if he wants to marry you without telling him about the baby, and you have to tell him that.   I will just ask him if he loves you.   If he says yes, do I have your permission to say you love him?"


      
  TOP       XVII.  CADENCE:  tambour 
"Love her?!"

"Do I love her?!   She is everything to me!   Birds in spring and rain falling on the pavement.   My heartbeat.   My last whisper and my silence.   A hopeless fantasy - ice caves doomed to melt in the spring - and leave not a wrack behind.  A fairy castle in the wind, a dome built on air - on thin air."

"That's very poetic, Johnny.   And I don't think it's hopeless.   What would you think, if you could have her?"

"Could I revive within me her - symphony and song?   To such a deep delight would win me that . . .  With music - loud and long - I would build that dome.   In air."

James Denson sat down on the park bench again, and looked at the weeping boy.   The fog over the Pacific was touched by the sun rising from behind the Oakland hills.  But the boy had more to say.

"And all who heard, should see them.   There that sunny dome; those caves of ice.    And all would cry beware - beware his flashing eyes.    His floating hair!"

Weave a circle round him thrice,
   and close your eyes with holy dread,
for he on honey dew hath fed.
"And drunk the milk of paradise."

 
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          June 2004
 

David Nunes da Silva



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Fiction : no reference is intended to actual persons, except famous persons identified by name.    The references to a bishop, newspaper columnist, union official, car dealer, etc., are not coded references to any actual persons.  Notable persons with these professions did of course exist in San Francisco in 1968, but any similarity between the fictional characters and real individuals has been deliberately avoided.
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"Could I revive within me her symphony"  : This is of course from the poem by Coleridge:  Link -> Xanadu

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subject line: {ASSM} Katherine and Johnny {David Nunes da Silva} (fm Mm bd cons 1st hist)

synopsis:  1968.   San Francisco.   Need I say more?   Riots.   Runaways from across the country, streaming into the city.   Things changed in that time, but boys still became men, and as men they failed, still, to love and be wise.
story codes: (fm Mm bd cons 1st hist)




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