Diane Ferry and Stephanie Whinnett, two fifth formers at St Thomas's, were standing outside the door of Miss Powell's office. They had been caught smoking behind the cycle sheds and had been told to report to the senior mistress after school.
They stood there in an unhappy silence. It was not the first time that either girl had been sent to Miss Powell for punishment and, although it was less than a fortnight before the end of term, they both knew only too well what to expect.
Both girls wore the 'unofficial school uniform' of T-shirt and jeans, but whereas Diane merely looked scruffy her friend managed to look more like a sophisticated city secretary than a naughty schoolgirl. The athletic Stephanie was one of the tallest girls at the school. Her skin-tight designer jeans revealed the outline of the skimpy panties she wore beneath them. But now her pretty face, with its large green eyes and its beautiful framing of long, soft chestnut-coloured hair was wearing a very unhappy expression indeed.
Stephanie looked at the palms of her hands miserably. She was no angel and must have felt the sting of Miss Powell's cane as often as any girl in the school, but she really didn't want another caning today of all days! Diane, meanwhile, was thinking of her own last visit to Miss Powell's office earlier that term. It hadn't been her hands that had been caned that time! Despite the passage of more than three weeks her buttocks and thighs were still decorated with faint marks left by the cane which Miss Powell had borrowed from Mr Lawson. She recalled a tip that little Julie Peters had passed to her, and spat on her hands and rubbed the spittle in.
The door opened. "Come in!" beckoned Miss Powell.
The two culprits stood in front of the senior mistress's desk while she lectured them on the stupidity of smoking and the consequences of breaking school rules. Still scolding them she went over to a cupboard in a corner of the room and selected a pliant straight-handled cane, about two feet in length.
"All right, Diane, you're first," she said, addressing the shorter girl. Stephanie, you go and stand facing the wall!"
The senior mistress swished the cane and walked round to stand in front of Diane. "I'm glad to see that you're not wearing 'hot pants', Diane," she observed. "It seems that your last caning taught you something! I hope that this will prove equally beneficial. Hand out please!"
Wearing an expression of extreme misery Diane held out her left hand. The cane came down with a sickening smack. Diane gasped, and then yelped as it bit into her palm again for the second stroke.
"Other hand, Diane."
This time it took a little longer for Diane to extend her arm and proffer the tender flesh of her right palm for the attentions of that viciously whippy cane.
Diane's hand was wavering slightly and the senior mistress took careful aim. The cane slashed down at terrific speed.
"Oww! Oww! Owwch!" Diane yelled and waved her hand, on the palm of which a vivid weal was making an appearance. Miss Powell did not let the girl have long to recover herself before ordering her to hold out her right hand again. Diane did so, her face crumpled up and her lips trembling.
The fourth stroke whacked hard against Diane's small palm, crossing the weal caused by the previous stroke. Diane screamed and danced around the office rubbing her caned hands together and blowing on them.
"Come on, girl!" Miss Powell admonished her. "There are still two strokes to come! It's not as though this were your first time for the cane! Do you want Stephanie there to think you're a coward? Come here and hold out the first hand again!"
Diane did so. She wasn't a coward, but neither of her two previous hand-canings had hurt so much as this before. She felt tears pricking at her eyes as she awaited the fifth stroke.
Miss Powell intended to make sure that Diane Ferry really felt her last two strokes. The fifth made the naughty girl feelas though the flesh of her palm had been slashed open and it was some time before she could be persuaded to hold out her right hand for the final stroke.
The senior mistress regarded the trembling sixteen year old. Tears were squeezing themselves through her tightly shut eyes and she wriggled in pain and anticipation. Miss Powell did not think that Diane would be smoking again in a hurry!
She released the last stroke.
Diane's right hand felt as though it had been pulped into a useless mass of raw meat. The well-caned teenager doubled up like a closing penknife and pressed her wealed hands to her stomach. The rubbed in spit hadn't been a ha'porth of help! Despite all her resolves Diane began to cry.
"Go and stand facing the wall, Diane," ordered Miss Powell. "Stephanie, you come and stand over here!"ne began to cry.
The tall fifth former left her place by the wall and walked over to the senior mistress. She knew that she had to say something. She couldn't take a caning like the one meted out to her friend - not today anyway.
"Hold out your hand, Stephanie!" said Miss Powell.
To her surprise the girl did not immediately obey. Instead Stephanie put her hands behind her back and addressed the senior mistress.
"Please, miss, can you punish me next week instead? It's the school sports day tomorrow and I'm in the javelin throwing. I'll never be able to take part if you give me the cane!"
"You should have thought of that before you smoked that cigarettes, Stephanie! Cigarette smoking is not exactly the best training for field sports! Now your left hand immediately!"
"No, please, miss. I'm in with a chance of breaking the school record! Can't I have my caning next week? Please?" Her green eyes gazed appealingly into Miss Powell's.
The senior mistress considered. Stephanie appeared to be in earnest and was not the sort of girl to be frightened of a caning. Diane, facing the wall and still trying to come to terms with the waves of pain emanating from her poor caned hands, managed to spare a few thoughts to wonder what would happen.
"Well, Stephanie," said the teacher, "I like to ensure that the punishment follows the offence as soon as possible, so I'm not prepared to delay your caning until next week." She paused. "However I will give you the option of being punished in a similar way to that in which your friend here was punished on her last visit here.
"In other words I am going to cane you today, Stephanie, and all the pleas and tears in the world will not change that. But I will give you the choice - hands or bottom! What is it to be, Stephanie?"
In a small voice the auburn-haired beauty replied "Bottom, miss!"
"Very well, Stephanie, you have made your choice. Now remove those jeans and whatever undergarments you have on!"
Stephanie objected, shocked at the thought of being caned on her naked buttocks. She protested that Diane and the others had been wearing hot pants and panties when they'd been caned. But Miss Powell remained firm.
"No, Stephanie! That was a special punishment and the caning was only one part of it. If I cane you on your hands it will be cane on bare flesh. If I cane your bottom it will have to be the same way!"
Stephanie gave way. She undid her large leather belt, unzipped her jeans and drew them off. Then, blushing, she pulled down her panties and stepped out of them. She stood in the centre of the office, barefoot, naked from the waist down.
"Move that chair into the middle of the room and then bend down over it, holding on to the seat!"
Stephanie did so, wondering miserably whether she had made the right choice.
Miss Powell went back to the cupboard and returned the cane, exchanging it for another one almost a foot longer and considerably thicker. After the `hot pants' incident the senior mistress had obtained an additional cane in case she had occasion to inflict any future bottom canings.
Stephanie leaned forward over the back of the chair and grasped the seat. Her long auburn hair dangled loosely down towards the carpet. She was very aware of her raised bottom, so exposed and vulnerable.
Miss Powell looked at Stephanie's about-to-be-caned bottom. She intended those smooth, flawless globes to look very different by the time she was finished. She decided she could use her full strength to punish this naughty girl. When caning Diane she had had to be careful not to cause permanent damage on the girl's small hands, but this voluptuous backside could take a genuine 'six of the best'. Stephanie fidgeted over the chair as she waited for the caning to begin and her bottom quivered in anticipation. "Stay still, girl, and keep a tight hold of the chair," Miss Powell warned her, "I intend this to hurt you a great deal!"
The senior mistress laid the cane across the middle of the girl's rump. Stephanie stiffened slightly. Miss Powell took the cane away and lowered it for about ten seconds - she wanted the first stroke to surprise Stephanie and really hurt. Slowly she raised the cane above her shoulders and aimed across the middle of the naked bottom. Then, flicking her wrist, she brought the whippy instrument down as hard as she could.
There was a short high-pitched whine followed by a loud thwackk as the cane whipped itself round the teenager's large bottom - the tip embedding itself on the far side of her right buttock. Stephanie's whole body shuddered as the pain hit her. Miss Powell took a step back and glanced at the girl's shaking hips. A bright thick purple line appeared dead centre across the pale flesh of both of her buttocks. Unfortunately for the hapless Stephanie the 'hot pants' incident, when Miss Powell had caned the bottoms of six naughty girls had left the senior mistress an expert in bottom caning as well as hand caning.
Miss Powell stepped forward again and delivered the second stroke. Stephanie's head came up sharply and she gasped. Another vivid stripe sprung up just above the first. The senior mistress aimed lower for the next and was rewarded by Stephanie half jumping up, turning her head towards her chastiser with pain-filled eyes and silently mouthing "oww!" To her credit her hands remained where they were, gripping the seat of the chair.
"Bend over properly, Stephanie. I have not finished with you yet!"
Shakily she resumed her position, straightening her long shapely legs and lifting her painful bottom high into the air once more. Miss Powell inspected the damaged area. She had no doubt that Stephanie's bottom was already very sore, but she intended to make it suffer a good deal more! A bare-bottomed caning had the advantage that she could position her strokes more carefully. She decided to ensure that the three remaining strokes landed within the already caned area.
Stephanie shrieked out and drummed her bare feet on the carpet as the whippy cane smacked solidly into her pain-filled rear for a further three times. "Stand up, Stephanie!" said the senior mistress.
The caned schoolgirl straightened and her hands, fingers splayed out, went to her wealed bottom, desperately trying to smother the flames of agony. Stephanie's eyes were streaming with tears now and dark eye make up was running down her face.
"Stop dancing around like that, Stephanie, and get dressed, ordered Miss Powell. Pulling on her panties and her tight jeans over her swollen bottom was supremely painful and Stephanie started to sob loudly. She would always remember this as being the worst part of her punishment. Miss Powell watched her wrigglings unsympathetically. She just saw a silly schoolgirl who had needed to be taught a good lesson and had got one.
When Stephanie was finally fully dressed again and stood squirming in front of the senior mistress's desk, hands firmly pressed to the seat of her jeans and with tears still slowly falling from her face, Miss Powell called Diane back to stand next to her. Diane had kept her face firmly to the wall throughout her friend's caning. It had sounded horribly painful.
Now she walked over to Stephanie's side, holding her throbbing hands awkwardly.
Miss Powell lectured the two errant schoolgirls once more on the evils of smoking. Then she dismissed them. As Stephanie hobbled painfully out of the office the senior mistress called after them "Oh, Stephanie! Good luck for tomorrow!"
Next day Stephanie, with a still very painful bottom under her tracksuit, duly obliged by winning the girls' javelin and setting a school record. Stephanie found her throbbing rearrather a hindrance in her run ups, and each time after she released the javelin she shouted loudly and her hands went to the seat of her tracksuit and massaged the wealed flesh carefully.
This involuntary reaction greatly amused the audience, especially the boys, most of whom knew that Stephanie had been caned the day before. But when Stephanie broke the record the applause and admiration was wholehearted.
Despite the continuing smart in her bottom Stephanie felt overjoyed. She had made the right choice after al