Worth It?

I didn’t know she had it in her, but the throbbing of my hindquarters right now provides a constant reminder that my girl is capable of many things, including surprises.

She’s sleeping now and I hope she stays that way until morning, though I doubt it with the way I keep coughing. The thought brings a new wave of embarrassment and I bury my warm face into her hair. She doesn’t even stir, so maybe there is hope.

We’re at her house, something our parents have started allowing so long as it isn’t a school night. In some ways they can be so old fashioned, but sometimes they’re downright reasonable. I’m usually only in on weekends anyway, so it really works out for us.

I was already coming down with a cold Thursday night and she told me I ought to stay in my dorm and rest, but I really thought I’d be better by the time class got out Friday morning and the drive home isn’t that long. Of course it takes a lot longer when your eyes are watering so badly that you can’t even go the speed limit, but still. Not too long.

And maybe I did suck it up long enough to make sure I at least sounded better when she called to check on me before I left. Maybe it wasn’t the brightest of ideas, but I guess I thought somehow I could will myself into better health somewhere between leaving campus and arriving on her doorstep. Instead she took one look at me and practically hauled me upstairs and into her bed.

I didn’t have the good sense to be quiet about it, either. I was all I’m fine and it’s really nothing while she just stared at me like I’d grown two heads. Still, I wasn’t expecting it when she walked over to where I was sitting on the bed, stepping between my knees and putting her arms around my neck. I thought she was going to kiss me but instead she tipped my chin up to look at her– something I’ve never once minded doing– and said, “I’ve half a mind to borrow my mother’s hairbrush. And I will, too, if you don’t get yourself under the covers right now. I’m going to the store to grab some flu medicine. We’re out and you need it.”

My mouth fell open and I probably would have just stared up at her for eternity if I hadn’t been seized by one of the coughing fits that had marked this particular bout of sickness. I ducked my head down and she stepped away, getting me a glass of water while I caught my breath but then pulling the bed cover back pointedly. It was hard to argue after all that, though, so I didn’t. Instead I crawled under the blankets, and though I didn’t make any promises, I did wait until she was good and gone before getting back up to grab my laptop. She was probably right that I needed the rest, but I also needed to finish a couple of assignments that were due next week and I only intended to work a few minutes. Besides, I was pretty sure she wasn’t serious. 

She returned to find my nose three inches from the screen and a pile of tissues on the bed next to me. Usually I’d have heard her car in the driveway or her keys in the door, but I didn’t know she was back until she practically growled at me to shut the computer and I jumped, startled. She left the room before I could say anything, and I quickly set the laptop aside and swept my pile of tissues into the bin on the floor.

I was a lot more startled when she came back with the very same hairbrush she’d threatened earlier, and she looked pretty serious now. “Flip over,” she said.

“Wait, baby,” I said back, dumbfounded by this turn of events, but instead of responding she just reached down to yank back the blankets that had been resting on my legs.

There wasn’t much else to do after that besides what she’d said. I wiggled myself down a few more inches, until I was closer to flat on the bed, keeping my eyes trained on hers and hoping to convey telepathically that I was already feeling pretty sorry. And I was, too. I’d been too fuzzy to get anything useful done, instead wasting the whole of her errand re-reading the same thing over and over again. I’d like to blame the same brain fog for all the other bad decisions I’d made that day, but I don’t think it would have changed how things played out.

I rolled over, my hands coming up to my face so I could hide there, and in a second she pulled my loose-fitting sweats halfway down my thighs and my underwear with them. I felt her lean down, her left hand putting some weight on the small of my back, and then the sting of the hairbrush as it whipped down on my newly bared and vulnerable bottom.

I’d like to say I took the spanking with some shred of dignity, but it would just be a lie. I hollered from the first lick and kicked my feet against the bed as she tore into me like an old pro. I knew she’d been on the receiving end of this hairbrush about as often as they deliver the Sunday paper, but it never occurred to me that she’d know what to do with it from this end. Maybe if I’d gotten a warm up I would have been a bit more stoic, but that wasn’t the spanking she gave me. Instead she concentrated all of her efforts on the same two spots, snapping that thing down over and over again until I developed the very bruises keeping me company right now.

It felt like a miracle that I didn’t cough the whole time, but I guess the whole thing couldn’t have lasted more than a few minutes. She probably factored that in when she decided to put me in my place, come to think of it: short but effective, emphasis on the effective. I can’t say I’ve never encountered a wooden hairbrush before but the belt has always been my dad’s go-to. I don’t know if anyone ever really gets used to the indignity or the pain of being spanked, but maybe there is something to be said for familiarity. Or maybe I just want to find some logic behind the way I acted, as if there’s going to be some deeper explanation. The explanation is that the spanking hurt and it still hurts. Doesn’t help to know I deserved it. I’m at least grateful her mother wasn’t home. That, I would not have survived.

When she finally did put the brush away, I still had my face hiding in my palms, too embarrassed to look up and face her, my pride surely as bruised as my freshly spanked backside. Then she sat on the bed and put her fingers in my hair, and of course there wasn’t anything I could do but sidle up closer. I gulped in deep breaths of her, absorbing her scent and the soft feel of her thigh against my cheek until I calmed down.

“Ready to sit up?” she said after a few minutes, and I was so I did, wincing. She searched my face for a minute and I hope she saw plenty of remorse in there and maybe the shadow of gratitude there, though I couldn’t have named it at the time. I wasn’t exactly happy, but whatever stubborn energy had been driving me to keep going and keep going had finally been banished. Exhaustion had fallen over me and I couldn’t imagine doing anything except whatever she said.

“Drink this,” was her next gentle command, after she was satisfied I was going to survive, and then she handed me a little cup of radioactive green liquid. I did make a face, but I downed it in one go and the pleased look she gave me after made my heart leap with childish delight. I handed her back the medicine cup and dove immediately back down into the covers, keeping myself pressed against her and fully leaning into my pitiful state.

There were a few mumbled I’m sorries and some make-up kisses to my forehead, but I wasn’t awake for much longer. I slept a few hours, was awake a few hours, ate the soup she brought me, slept again, half watched a movie, took more medicine. I still don’t understand how someone can sleep so much and still be tired, but even now I feel the haze of a new slumber washing over me.

I nuzzle her hair one more time for good measure and wonder if my cough has finally subsided. Maybe tomorrow I’ll actually be well enough to justify the trip down here. I think about the ache in my backside and what a pain sitting is going to be tomorrow, though, and decide to keep that thought to myself.

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