The first caning
The trouble is that, no matter how much anyone tries to warn you, the first time you experience the cane it comes as an awful shock.
Sandra knew she was for it - there was only one penalty if you were caught smoking - so she sought out Linda who had probably been caned more often than anyone else at the school.
"Wow, poor old you!" Linda had said, "You know it's going to be 12 on the bare, and he'll use a Dragon." Sandra thought her knees might give way.
"But Linda, how much does it really hurt? I mean, I've had the strap and the hairbrush before, and the paddle once. I hated the paddle!"
"The cane's much worse. For a start, it's the waiting. You know you're going to get it, but he goes through a whole rigmarole of why smoking is bad for you and so on, when all you want to do is have the whole thing over and done with. Then he'll get up and if necessary, he'll clear a space on that sideboard thing. Then he'll tell you to drop your knickers and bare your bum, although what he actually says is 'Please lower your underwear, young lady, lift up your skirt and bend over the chest.' Pompous old fool! Anyway, while you're doing that, he'll walk over to the rack of canes and take down whichever one he's going to use. If he reaches up to the top, it's bad news: that's where the Dragon is kept. The next bit's almost the worst. He'll walk slowly back across the room, swishing the wretched thing. It makes this awful whistling noise. Then he usually tucks the hem of your skirt into the waistband, so that it won't fall down. The next thing, you'll feel him lay the cane across your cheeks. It feels cool, and he sort of rubs it to and fro, a bit like a violinist's bow. Then he taps your bottom a couple of times and that's when you should tighten your grip."
"Oh golly! And what's the first stroke like?"
"When it lands, for a moment you think it isn't going to be too bad. It's just a kind of thump. But then, a moment later, oh my God! It's as though someone has laid a red hot poker across your backside. It hurts like nothing you've ever felt before."
"Oh Lord, I'll never be able to keep still and I'm bound to shriek like a banshee."
"Don't worry, Sandra, almost everyone does the first time. Just try not to get up and massage your bum. If you do that, you get extras. Listen, good luck old thing - let me know how it went afterwards and show me those stripes."
And it turned out almost exactly like Linda had said it would, except that the sting was worse than anything she could possibly have imagined. No matter how much the Old Man told her to keep still, she just couldn't stop kicking each time the cane thwacked into her soft bottom, and her cries could be heard at the furthest end of the school..
Next illustrated story HERE
Images from the Penitents