A Saint Francis Thanksgiving

By Mary Catherine Whitney

Part 1-Hurricane Mary

. . . Mary's Senior Year just as the campus closes for Thanksgiving Break

Andy stood by his office window watching groups of girls walk briskly across the Quad toward class. From his vantage point it was obvious that most of them were in high spirits-naturally so with the big holiday weekend coming up and the chance to go home for 10 days. Thanksgiving break was one of the few times when all the girls left campus. It was done for the staff's sake as much as for the students. Finals were fast approaching and everyone needed a little time to de-stress. Andy was looking forward to spending a couple of quiet days on campus followed by a week of skiing with friends in Colorado.

He smiled as he spotted Mary Catherine walking out of Benning Hall with Mandy. She was talking in an animated fashion . . . her head back laughing at something Mandy had said. Mary Catherine had recovered very quickly considering her injuries and the seriousness of her fall. The short cast on her arm was clearly a nuisance to her, particularly since she still had to wear the sling that immobilized her strained shoulder, but she was moving easily now so it appeared that it was no longer painful. No doubt her being an athlete had helped in her quick recovery, though he knew it frustrated her to be slowed down. Doctor Reardon had cleared her to go back to class last week and she had resumed her duties as a Senior Floor Advisor. Andy was relieved, a spill as bad as the one she took could've laid her up for weeks, even months. All in all Mary Catherine had been very lucky.

He watched the two girls walk across campus. Mary had to stop several times to readjust her backpack, which was slung precariously over her left shoulder. It was obviously awkward for her to carry. Each time the pack slipped, Mary Catherine had to set it down on the ground and try and swing it back over her shoulder to get it in place. After the third time it was apparent that Mandy wanted to take the bag from Mary, but she shook her head adamantly.

The cast on her arm was there to stay for at least three more weeks, making the simplest tasks challenging and she stubbornly refused to be helped. Her tie was usually only partially tied these days (she wouldn't let anyone tie it for her, unless Andy absolutely insisted) and she was also guilty of his biggest pet peeve, leaving the collar buttons on her crisp oxford shirt unbuttoned. Considering her condition, he forgave that for now. Andy knew it was hard for her to accept help, so he was willing to make some allowances when possible. Still, he wished Mary Catherine would let Mandy carry her books. Doctor Reardon had cautioned Mary on overusing her good arm while the breaks were healing and he was afraid she was doing too much.

The backpack in place again, the two girls continued across the Quad. Kristen Sumners caught up with them as they passed Founders Hall and they picked up their pace as they headed toward the Walker Science Building. The girls were close enough now that he could hear their laughter outside his window. Mary in particular was really excited about the holiday and the prospect of going home. It had been quite some time since she had seen her parents-over a year from what he could recall.

It had taken some quick thinking and quite a bit of arm twisting on Andy's part to get Mary Catherine's parents to take her for the holiday, but they finally agreed. He didn't feel a bit guilty playing up Mary's injuries and how the doctor thought spending some time at home would be good for her. He smiled watching Mary as she walked into Walker Hall, still talking a mile a minute. He hoped the visit with her parents would help to settle that wild streak in her that seemed to be growing wider with each passing day.

Andy glanced at the clock and put on his jacket, heading out the door for his meeting with Miss Clair, the Headmistress of Saint Anthony's School for Girls. Saint Francis regularly rented out a cottage to Saint Anthony's middle school for storage purposes. Until 1987 Saint Anthony's had been a day school and even now the dorms were inadequate, especially when it came to closet space. The weather had turned recently though and Miss Clair was coming to get her girls' winter uniforms out of storage. Andy grabbed the key off Helen's desk and walked down to the first floor. Miss Clair was already waiting, going over her checklist of items she needed to collect.

They headed out of Old Main and visited some of the cottages that Saint Anthony's would be renting out this summer for their academic academy, as well as the larger cottage used for storage space. The two of them talked, comparing notes. Andy caught her up on all the girls who had graduated from Saint Anthony's and went on to Saint Francis. Mary and Mandy came up then as they always did. They were quite the little hell raisers even then. Miss Clair laughed at the mention of their names, saying she'd nearly worn out her hand, not to mention her small wooden paddle in the three years they'd been at Saint Anthony's.

"I swear Andy, Mary Catherine in particular was across my knee so often I doubt I'd recognize her standing up. She still a little terror?" Andy nodded ruefully, thinking just how recently she'd made her way across his knee for a Saint Anthony's style spanking. "She's been slowed down a bit these days, but she still gets into plenty of mischief," he responds. "She took a nasty spill off her new horse over Parents Weekend which has her running at about half speed at the moment. Broke her arm in two places and dislocated her shoulder. I figure she'll be back to her old self though once that cast comes off though." Miss Clair laughed. "It'd take a full body cast at least to slow Mary down enough to keep up with her, but at least it sounds like you have a fighting chance for a while." Agreeing with Miss Clair he unlocked the storage cottage and got to work . . .

By the time Andy returned to his office around 5:00 pm most of the girls had left for the holiday break. He had spent most of the afternoon giving out goodbye hugs to the girls and shaking parents' hands. It was nearly time for supper when he got back to his desk. Looking at the clock he realized the final shuttle with the girls' suitcases had already left and so had the laundry truck. Andy was going to have to take his clothes to the dry cleaners himself if he wanted them back by the time he left for Colorado.

Andy flicked on his computer and went through his email. There was a ton, recruitment season was in full swing and prospective parents were requesting information about Saint Francis daily. He almost missed the email at first, there were at least 50 of them waiting in his inbox. "No," he thought, "it can't be." Unfortunately it was. A simple one sentence email from Mary Catherine's father, expressing regret, but saying they wouldn't be able to meet Mary for the holiday break.

Andy spent the next thirty minutes trying to reach Mary's parents to no avail. Finally he got through to her father's secretary, but it was clear it was useless. They were on their way to Europe-involved in delicate negotiations regarding his business that would at least take at least a week. The message he left for Andy with his secretary (damn, he KNEW Andy would call and object!) specifically stated that they couldn't take her and to please make other arrangements. Mention was also made of the extra money they'd put in her account for expenses. Andy sighed. He was tired of the Whitney's solving their problems with a check. Finally too disgusted to continue Andy thanked the secretary and hung up.

He took a deep breath and thought about what he had to do. In all the years he had known Mary Catherine, nothing was as hard to do as this. Even the worst spanking he had ever given Mary hadn't filled him with the dread he felt when he had to tell her that her parents had let her down again. Picking up the phone he called the airline, the lodge and finally Tim to cancel his ski trip. Obviously he couldn't bring Mary, she'd be stuck in the lodge while he was out on the slopes and that wasn't fair to her. Luckily Tim was the Dean of Students at Flintridge Prep and he understood that these things happened.

Putting down the phone, Andy shook his head and headed across the Quad to track Mary Catherine down. He'd try to make it up to her the best he could-movies, maybe a couple of days in Philadelphia to see the new impressionist exhibit at the Museum of Fine Arts. He wondered if Doctor Reardon would allow him to take Mary trail riding if he swore they'd only walk and she was VERY careful. He'd call into town and order supplies for a real Thanksgiving dinner too. He hadn't planned on anything special since he was expecting to fly out the next day. Andy smiled to himself, full of plans. Mary Catherine was good company and this would be fun, even if it wasn't what he had planned.

As Andy walked up to Benning Hall, Mary was sitting outside on the wide stone steps, eyes closed, looking relaxed. Her backpack was beside her and he could see she had her headphones on and her CD player sitting on her lap. Andy sat down beside her and gently removed the headphones. "Hey Sport," he says as she opens her eyes and turns to look at him. "Hi Dean," she responds. "My ride should be here any minute now." She looks at her watch and frowns. "Actually they're about 10 minutes late." Mary gets up and turns to go inside to call the shuttle company when Andy stops her. "Stay a minute Sport, I need to talk to you."

Mary freezes, recognizing the tone he was using. "No," she whispers, her face turning white. "NOOOOOOOO! You're NOT going to say it . . . you're not! They're coming this time, they promised . . . they promised!!" Mary's eyes start to tear and it's getting hard to breathe. "Shhhhh, I'm sorry Mary, they wanted to, but . . ." "BUT NOTHING!!!!! If they wanted me home they'd do anything! They don't want me though, do they? I hate them Dean . . . I really, really HATE them!!!!" Andy stands up and puts his arms around her. "You don't hate them Mary, and you have every right to be mad. It's ok Mary, I know it hurts, but you'll see we're going to have a great holiday. I want you here and . . ."

Mary Catherine struggles and breaks free of his grasp. "NO! Leave me alone . . . just leave me alone!" With that she throws her portable CD to the ground and races into Benning Hall. "Mary, come on Sport . . ." Andy starts to race after her, but a horn honking behind him causes him to turn around. Another group of girls were getting ready to leave for the airport. Sighing Andy turns and walks up to the car to say his good-byes. By the time he was able to go after Mary Catherine she was no where to be found.

Andy tried not to panic. Mary Catherine had disappeared and he had searched for her everywhere he could think of. The few girls remaining on campus filtered out as the Dean continued his search. At first he wasn't that alarmed, he couldn't blame Mary for being upset. His trip up to her room had left him with some grave concerns though. Her suite was in shambles, it looked like a hurricane had struck it. Mary Catherine in a rage had totally trashed the room. The Dean sighed and left continuing his search . . .

Walking back out of Benning he saw Mandy with her parents. It looked like Mandy was the last girl to leave and she definitely didn't look happy. Andy knew Mr. Brinkley was furious about Mandy's C in physics and Andy tried to persuade him that it wasn't the end of the world. It didn't do any good. Mr. Brinkley glared at Mandy the entire time Andy explained that she couldn't be expected to get straight A's and that she was holding a solid C. "Well she' ll be getting a lot of "hands on tutoring" these next 10 days Dean. That'll be brought back up to an A by the end of the term, right young lady?" Mandy' s father asked. She nodded tearfully, knowing just "how" he planned on motivating her.

Andy gave Mandy a hug and wished her as happy a holiday as possible. He then quietly told her what had happened with Mary and asked where she might be hiding out. "She'd normally go riding, but she can't with that arm. Try the dining hall Dean. When she gets really, REALLY depressed she eats ice cream. Lots of it." Andy gave her a final hug and pulled her father aside and pointed out the insignificance of the C grade one more time. He then walked toward the dining hall, praying she was there . . .

Meanwhile . . .

Mary had run as fast as she could from the Dean-hot, angry tears blinding her vision. First she went to her room and tore up her plane ticket then proceeded to totally trash her room. Finally she wore herself out and went down to the stables and cried on AJ's shoulder. Mary Catherine was miserable, she'd never felt so awful. She didn't know why she ever trusted her mom and dad, they'd done nothing but let her down. Suddenly her stomach rumbled. She needed ice cream.

By the time Mary Catherine reached the dining hall she had calmed down somewhat-at least on the outside. She made her way to the pantry and pulled out everything she needed for a banana split. Stray tears poured down her cheeks as she made her sundae-the biggest she had ever made, all the while thinking about what her parents had done. When she finished she laughed, it was big enough for at least 10 people! She laughed until her laughter turned to tears again and finally to rage. She flung the bowl of ice cream toward the open pantry door and sat quietly for a second, and after taking a deep breath got up and walked into the pantry . . .

Andy pushed the swinging door open and walked into the kitchen. It was quiet, but there was an open container of ice cream on the counter, plus a can of whipped cream, hot fudge, and a large jar of maraschino cherries. The ice cream was still hard, she must've just left. He turned to leave and continue his search when he noticed the pantry light. He walked over and opened the door, blinking in disbelief. It was even worse than her room! Food was everywhere, smeared on the floor and splashed on the walls. Chocolate sauce, jams, patches of flour . . . it looked as though the pantry exploded! Bags were torn, glass was smashed, and cans looked as though they' d been hit with a hammer. He couldn't even walk, the floor was sticky and covered in glass.

At first he didn't spot Mary, but then he saw her curled up on the floor. She was rolled into a tight ball sound asleep. She was covered in food from head to toe. Her uniform was hardly recognizable and obviously ruined. She had evidently tore the place apart until she collapsed from exhaustion and had fallen asleep where she fell.

Part 2: Back to basics . . .

Andy was equal parts touched and mad. He felt bad for her because of what had happened, but this behavior was NOT acceptable. She had thrown a temper tantrum like a six-year-old today—not once but twice. He stood silently and watched her sleep. Mary Catherine’s face, as least the parts he could see, were streaked by tears. Andy sighed, at the moment he wasn’t sure if he should hug her or spank her . . .

He carefully picked his way across the sticky, glass-strewn floor until he reached Mary Catherine’s side. Andy gingerly moved a broken jar out of the way and slowly knelt beside her. Shaking her shoulder lightly he says, “Mary? Come on Sport . . . time to wake up.”

She stirs and awkwardly struggles to sit up one handed. Andy reaches out to steady her and Mary rubs her eyes with the back of her hand as she gains her balance. “Where am I?” she asks sleepily. “In the dining hall Sport, remember?” Mary Catherine looks around and sees the flour, jam, maple syrup and the rest splashed on the floor and walls. She suddenly drops her eyes, blushing deeply as she remembered her earlier rage. Andy reaches over and gently strokes her cheek, keeping his reproachful words silent for now. Judging by the contrite look on Mary’s face, she remembered all too well what she had done. There would be plenty of time to scold her later.

As Mary continues to survey the damage, her mouth forms a silent O. “I’m SO sorry Dean,” she finally whispers. “I got mad, I couldn’t stop myself. I’ll clean it up, honest.” Andy nods and carefully helps her to her feet, leading her around the worst of the mess and out of the pantry. “Shhhh Mary, I know you’re sorry and we’ll discuss it later. Right now I want to get you washed up a bit and . . .”

Andy stops as he spots a long, dark red streak trailing down her right cheek from the corner of her eye. Concerned, he quickly leads her over to the large row of sinks and grabs a clean dish towel to remove the blood. “Hold still Sport, you’ve got a nasty cut by your eye and I’m going to have to wash it off. It’s going to sting.” He stops suddenly and laughs, despite himself. “The ‘blood’ had seeds in it! Mary frowns, pulling back from him slightly. “What?” she asks. “False alarm Sport, it’s just raspberry jam. Hold still while I clean you up a little. You’re a mess.”

Turning on the faucet Andy wets the towel with warm water and gently washes her face and left hand. Mary squirms with embarrassment; she feels like an untidy six-year-old getting washed off after playing in the mud! “Stop fidgeting Sport, we’re almost done,” Andy chides as he cleans her up. ”I can do it myself, you know,” she says somewhat sulkily as he continues to scrub her face.

“No you can’t, not with one hand,” he responds levelly. Now behave or I’ll turn you over my knee right here, right now, is that clear?” Mary flushes dully, nodding. “Yes Dean,” she mumbles, wishing the floor would open up and swallow her whole. This was SO embarrassing; he was treating her like a child!

Finally Andy has gotten off enough to look her over carefully. Amazingly she didn’t have a scratch on her! Greatly relieved, he takes her now clean hand and leads her quietly across the moonlit Quad to his cottage . . .

Opening the front door, he slips off his loafers and instructs Mary Catherine to wait on the porch while he gets some newspaper on which to put their shoes. She nods, watching him walk inside. Mary Catherine was confused. She’d expected the Dean to be mad, to yell at her—to spank her even. She’d really behaved badly, yet he was being so nice, even if he was treating her like SUCH a little girl!

Andy quickly returns and says, “Ok, step on the paper Mary so we can get those shoes and socks off.” Mary nods and walks inside. She starts to slip off her shoes, pushing at the heel of one shoe with the toe of the other, but Andy quickly drops to his knees and steadies her.

“Lift up Mary,” he says as he pulls off her left shoe and sock. “I can do it myself,” she insists, trying to move away from him. “Mary . . .” he says in a warning voice. She sighs, but stills, closing her eyes as he removes her other shoe and eases her sticky sock off of her foot. “There we go Sport. Now we’re going to get you into a nice warm bath and finish cleaning you up, ok?”

He reaches for her hand, again and before she knows it, they’re upstairs in his guest bathroom. Andy starts the water, putting his hand underneath until it starts running warm, then puts the stopper in the claw-footed tub. Rummaging under the sink he pulls out a large bottle of bubble bath, and pours in a liberal amount. The fragrant smell of lilacs begins to fill the room and Mary breathes deeply, smiling slightly. Despite her embarrassment, a bath sounded really inviting!

“Ok Sport, I’m going to get a bag and some tape to cover up your cast. Do you need help with the buttons?” Mary shakes her head, blushing furiously. She wasn’t about to let him undress her, no matter how hard it was these days to do it by herself! Andy carefully unstraps her arm from across her chest and removes the sling. Mary winces as he lowers her arm to the side. Her shoulder usually stiffened up by this time of day. “Ok then, I’ll be back in a minute.”

Mary watched him walk out, then struggled out of her cardigan and slowly began to work the buttons on her oxford shirt. She had a tee shirt on underneath, a bra was too difficult to maneuver with her cast. Her fingers fumbled with the small buttons, but one by one they came loose, until the shirt was unbuttoned all the way and hanging loose.

There was still the problem of the button on the left cuff though. Her right sleeve had been cut away to accommodate her cast, but Mandy had buttoned the other sleeve for Mary this morning. Her right hand was useless and she couldn’t bend her fingers on the left one enough to unfasten the sleeve to free her arm. Finally Mary Catherine brought her wrist up to her mouth and began to tug at the cuff, trying to slowly work the button free.

By the time Andy came back, tears of frustration had welled up in Mary’s eyes. Andy looked at her struggling with the sleeve, tugging hard—the edge of the cuff firmly clamped between her teeth like a vice. He set the bags and tape on the vanity and carefully took her arm, swiftly unbuttoning the sleeve. Andy then removed her tie and helped her out of the shirt and put them in one of the garbage bags. There was no way her uniform was salvageable; he wasn’t even going to try sending it to the cleaners. Fortunately he’d managed to find another sling in the infirmary so he didn’t need to worry about cleaning hers up.

Lowering the lid on the toilet seat, he gestures for Mary to sit down so he can put the bag on her arm to protect the cast. Mary sighs, but wisely kept quiet and Andy quickly put the heavy bag over her right arm, taping it up tight. “There, all done,” he said with a small smile on his face. “Now, I’m going to let you finish getting undressed and I want you in that tub by the time I get back to help you with your hair. I hope maple syrup isn’t too hard to get out. Can you manage the rest of the clothes on your own Sport?” Mary blushes furiously at the meaning behind his question. “Yes . . uhmmm . . . definitely Dean, honest. I’ve got it from here. Thanks.” Nodding, he left her alone again . . .

The rest was pretty easy. She was able to unfasten her plaid skirt and let it drop over her hips and to the floor. She put it in the bag and looking at the door she slid down her panties and added them to the pile. Mary Catherine started to squirm her way out of her tee shirt, then remembering his words stopped, letting the long loose shirt settle back over her hips. After a long moment, she walked over to the bathtub, stopped the water, and climbed in, the tee shirt firmly in place.

“Ahhhhhh,” she sighed softly as she felt the warm water and fragrant bubbles settle around her. Resting her cast on the edge of the tub, she leans back and closes her eyes, letting the tension slip away.

She grew so relaxed in fact that she didn’t hear Andy come back in until he knelt on the floor beside her and cleared his throat quietly. Mary didn’t know how long she was in the bath . . . 20 minutes, 30? The water had become cool and she shivered slightly as she realized it was no longer warm. “Feel better Mary Catherine?” he asks as he reruns the taps to add more hot water to the tub. She nods shyly, drawing her knees up to her chest and hugging them with her left arm.

She was torn at the moment. Mary was embarrassed and a little afraid waiting for the other shoe to drop, yet her heart melted because of the gentle care the Dean was giving her. Dropping her head to her knees she closes her eyes briefly, then looks up at him. “Did I say I was sorry Dean?” she asks. He nods, avoiding the topic temporarily.

Going back to her room for her things had helped him decide how to handle things with Mary. While she unwound a little he’d written out a simple list of rules. This wasn’t going to be the Thanksgiving Break he’d planned to give her, but Andy hoped he’d be able to reach her. Mary Catherine had been angry with her parents for a long time, and while he didn’t blame her, Andy knew she needed to start dealing with her problems and disappointments in a more adult way because 17 was too old to still be throwing temper tantrums.

Most of the time Mary was very mature for her age, but when she let her temper get the best of her she was totally out of control. Since she’d decided to act like a child, he decided that’s exactly the way he’d treat her. Andy had ten days to work with Mary Catherine, he only hoped it was long enough to make a real difference.

Andy suddenly realizes she’s wearing still wearing her tee shirt. “Do you always take a bath in your underwear young lady?" he asks. She looks down, blushing furiously. “No Dean,” she says, “I just . . . please don’t make me take it off.” He nods, barely able to keep from turning bright red himself. He hadn’t thought about just how embarrassing this would be for her—for both of them in fact. “No, it’s fine, I just wondered.” He grabs a washcloth and soap and working up a good lather he hands it to her so she can wash the remainder of the sticky mess off her legs. It’s slow and awkward with one hand, but Mary finally manages to get herself clean.

Andy watches her intently. Several times he wanted to stop her, to take charge, but he knew that would cross the line between embarrassment and humiliation. She would learn to accept his help though and trust him, so he waited. He needed to pick the battles he could win. When she finally handed back the washcloth, he unfastened her ponytail and motioned for her to lean back so he could wash her hair.

“NO!” she said adamantly, trying to push his hand away. “I’m perfectly capable of bathing myself!” “Mary Catherine Whitney, I want you to settle down right this instant. You can NOT do this yourself and you ARE going to let me wash your hair or so help me I’ll strip off that tee shirt and scrub you from head to toe, is that clear?” “You WOULDN’T dare!” Mary Catherine says, blushing clear down to her toes. “I suggest you don’t test me on this Mary, unless you’re willing to face the consequences. Now lean back, against my arm so we can get this over with.”

Mary Catherine bites her tongue and tentatively starts to lean back stiffly. She was scared to lean back with no way to brace herself. “It’s ok Mary,” he says as he sees her tense, sensing what was wrong. “I’m right here, you’re not going to slip. Do you feel my arm?” “Yes,” she says quietly, starting to sniffle slightly. She HATED this, yet he was being so sweet, even when he was scolding her. “Good girl, now hold your breath . . .”

It took a long time for Andy to wash everything out of Mary Catherine’s long brown hair. As much as she argued that she could do it herself Mary had to admit, she loved his touch. Andy’s hands were extremely gentle as he massaged the shampoo into her tangled, matted locks and he was careful to keep the soap out of her eyes. She was grateful he was in back of her though because he couldn’t see the tears that ran down her face from his vantage point.

Mary knew she didn’t deserve him being so nice to her. She’d acted like a spoiled brat and worse, Mary Catherine knew he had been planning to go skiing in Colorado over the break and being stuck with her had obviously ruined his plans, yet he didn’t say a word. Finally he rinsed her hair for a final time and helped her stand. The shirt clung to her body like second skin and Mary Catherine blushed furiously, crossing her broken arm in front of her chest and yanked on the bottom of her long tee shirt to bring it further down her bare thighs.

Seemingly oblivious, Andy quickly picked up a towel, turned her around and rubbed her hair. He then helped her out of the tub and pointed at the towels and pajamas he’d set out for her. “Get changed and meet me downstairs Sport, ok? I made us some supper if you’re hungry.” Suddenly her stomach rumbled and she realized she was more than hungry, she was starved! “Be right down Dean,” she responds as he walks out the door and closes it behind him. Mary slowly stripped off the soaking wet tee shirt, dropped it into the bag, and started to towel off . . .

Mary Catherine wandered downstairs about 15 minutes later, walking uncertainly into the kitchen. It was empty, but there was a large pot of soup on the stove and rolls warming in the oven. It smelled delicious. Andy came in just then and stopped in the doorway, leaning against the doorjamb as he looked at her appraisingly. Her back was to him as she lifted the lid of the stock pot, but she looked absolutely adorable. He’d discovered up in her room that she’d sent all of her uniforms to the laundry and her after school clothes home. If he had to make a guess her suitcases were halfway to New York by now.

His pajama bottoms were way too long and big, but she’d managed to roll the legs up to just above her ankles and drew the drawstring waistband tight enough to keep them up over her slender hips. He wondered how Mary Catherine managed to tie them one handed, he was sure she’d need his help. She’d put on the tee shirt he left out for her then added the pajama top, leaving it unbuttoned. She turned around then and he smiled warmly. “I thought we’d have supper in front of the fire, Sport,” he said. “Come on, it’s all ready, I’ll just grab the rolls and be right in.”

Their meal was very quiet. Mary sat close to the fire, which dried her hair into an unruly mass of ringlets. She ate as slowly as she could as if she sensed what was to come. Finally the last of the soup was gone and she reluctantly put spoon down. “Full?” Andy asks as she pushes her hair back over her shoulder. “Yes Dean,” she says softly. “Are you feeling better now?” Mary nods, looking at him apprehensively. “Good, I’m glad. Now I’m going to do the dishes and I want you to wait in your room for me.

She felt her heart sink, even though she knew she’d earned this spanking. He’d been so nice to her she’d actually dared to hope he’d let her off with just a lecture this time. “Yes Dean,” she says again as she scrambles to her feet. “I’ll be up soon. I don’t think we need corner time tonight Sport, you seem to have settled down.” Mary’s face turns red at the words ‘corner time’ and ‘settled down’. He’d managed to reduce her to about six years old again! “I want you to think about what you did today though Mary, so I want you to sit up straight on the edge of the bed with your hands neatly folded in your lap. No fidgeting, got it?” She nods again and slowly makes her way to the guest room.

Andy took his time with the dishes, allowing Mary Catherine the time alone to think and reflect on her behavior. He heard the clock strike 9:00 pm and putting the last of the dishes away, he walked upstairs and knocked on Mary’s door, quickly letting himself in. Mary was sitting on the edge of the bed as he had instructed, her left hand clutching her cast. In the too big pajamas she looked even smaller than normal and seeing her lower lip tremble as she looked up at him, he realized she was a young lady who was very nervous about what was coming next.

Andy walks over to the dresser, but doesn’t see what he’s looking for. Without turning around he casually asks, “Where’s your hairbrush Mary?” She looks up panicked, her throat closing tight. “My back . . . backpack,” she manages to stammer as her eyes widen. He picks up her bag and unzips it, pulling out her large wooden hairbrush. Mary Catherine catches sight of the flat surface and makes a small sound, a half-gasp, half-moan. Andy looks into the mirror then and sees her wide eyed gaze then. She looked scared to death and couldn’t take her eyes off the hairbrush.

Quickly he crosses over to the bed and sits down behind her, giving her shoulder a small squeeze. “Shhhh, no Mary, it’s ok. I just thought we should get those nasty tangles out of your hair. I should’ve helped you brush it while it was still wet. Now just keep sitting still and I’ll try to get them out without tugging. Let me know if it hurts, ok?” Mary nods and drops her head slightly, looking at her lap.

Andy began to slowly brush her hair, taking small sections and working from the bottom up. As he did he began to to lecture Mary Catherine, very slowly and gently, careful to keep his voice level. Mary listened as he explained why he was so disappointed in her, what her punishment would be, how he expected more of her, and most importantly that he forgave her. She sat and thought in silence for a long time, not even realizing that he’d finished brushing all the knots out and that he’d stopped talking. Finally she looked up and saw him staring back at her in the mirror.

“I’m ready,” she said simply as she met his gaze. Andy squeezed her shoulder for reassurance. “Good girl,” he said as he moved up to sit beside her, grabbing a pillow from the far end of the bed. He placed it next to him to give her arm support, then helped her stand so he could unfasten her pajama bottom. She closed her eyes and bit her lower lip as she felt the loose pants slide to her ankles.

There was nothing worse in Mary’s mind than having to take her spanking on the bare. She felt like such a child when he spanked her bare and blushing over his knee, but she knew that’s how the Dean wanted her to feel because that’s how she had acted. She also knew from his lecture that this would be the first of many bare bottom spankings she was due this week and as much as she wanted to plead for him to leave her jammies up, she couldn’t bring herself to do it. She just wanted this spanking to be over as quickly as possible.

Andy quickly put her into a comfortable position over his lap so she was lying flat on the bed. Normally he’d use a straightbacked chair to administer this sort of spanking, but he was conscious of her broken arm and more importantly her strained shoulder. Mary squirmed slightly and tried her arm in a few positions before she found one that didn’t hurt. Andy waited until she took a deep breath and sighed, settling into his lap. Giving her bottom a small pat, he tightened his left arm around her waist and raised his right hand to begin to spank . . .

“Smack . . . smack . . . smack . . . smack,” his hand came down slow and firm, alternating from cheek to cheek. Mary Catherine buried her head in the crook of her left arm, stiffening slightly each time his hand landed on her bottom. “Smack . . . smack . . . smack . . . whap . . . craaaaaackkk!”

Andy felt Mary tense at the first harder spank and heard her slight gasp. He stopped a moment, and gave her bottom a reassuring tap. “Don’t tense up Sport, I know it smarts, but I don’t want to bruise you.” Mary squirmed a little, but didn’t tense when she felt his hand begin to land on her bare bottom again. “SMACK . . . SMACKK . . . SMAAAACKKKK . . . SMAAAACKKKKKK!!!!!”

Andy was careful to go slowly and warm her bottom, spreading around the spanks evenly. “SMAAAAAACCCKK . . . SMACCCKKKKK . . . SMAAAAAAACCCKKKKKK!!!!!” Mary’s eyes tightened and her gasps became more audible, each spank pulling a small ‘ow’ out of her mouth. By now Mary’s bottom was a bright, even shade of pink and Andy picked up the pace and intensity, focusing on the sit spot.

He hadn’t said much up until this point, but as he launched a rapid volley of spanks from cheek to cheek he began to scold her quietly, his words moving between the crisp smacking sounds on her bottom, “I expect . . . SMACK . . . better behavior . . . . SMACK from you young . . . SMACK . . . SMAACKKKK . . . SMAAAACKKKK . . . lady.”

Mary began to twist across his lap and her legs started to kick. “It’s not much fun . . . SMAAAAACKKKKK . . . SMAACKKKK . . . to be . . . SMMAAAACKKKK . . . treated . . . SMAAAAACKK . . . like a . . . . SMAACKK . . . little . . . SMAAACKKKKKK . . . girl, is it?” Mary shook her head violently, struggling hard now to get away from both his words and the spanks. “You are a little girl though Mary, at least that’s how you’ve been acting . . . SMAACKK . . . WHAPPPPPP . . . CRAAAACKKK!!!”

Andy suddenly feels all the tension go out of her body and he hears her begin to cry. He continued to spank her, more slowly now, but firm and steady, allowing the tears and the little girl sobs to escape. Gradually her struggling stopped and she simply cried. Her bottom smarted fiercely and the tears were pouring freely down her cheeks by the time Andy stopped spanking her and set her on her feet.

He gently eased her pajama bottom back up and she gasped slightly as the flannel brushed against her well-spanked cheeks. She rubbed as he tightened the drawstring. Once he had it tied in a big bow he settled Mary Catherine back on his lap, taking care to keep her off her bottom. “Shhhhh . . . it’s ok Mary, good girl, it’s all over now.” She felt him hug her and she dropped her head to his shoulder as she softly cried herself out.

When her breathing had calmed Andy helped her climb into bed and pulled her teddy bear Simon out of her backpack. He watched as she stretched out face down and brought her cast onto the pillow by her side. “What’s going to happen tomorrow Dean?” she asks, her voice mixed with exhaustion and dread as she looked up at him. “Nothing so very awful Mary Catherine, honest. We’re just going to work on your temper and your patience. Now I’m setting the alarm clock for 7:00 am and I want you downstairs for breakfast by 7:30, ok?”

Mary makes a face at having to get up so early on her vacation, but nods, lowering her head to the pillow as sleep settles over her like a warm cloak on a cold day. She’d worry about tomorrow when it came. Andy sat with her until she fell asleep, then went to his own room and turned in. He had a feeling tomorrow was going to be a long day.

Just before dawn Andy slipped into the guest room and left the list he’d made the night before on the dresser and placed her new clothes beside it. Crossing over to the bed, he gently pulled up the covers that Mary Catherine had kicked off in the night, and put Simon back beside her. Mary was curled onto one side, her left hand wrapped protectively around her cast. The alarm clock would be going off soon and he wanted to have everything in place by the time she came downstairs. Swiftly he left the room and headed off to make breakfast . . .

© 1998 & 1999, Mary Catherine Whitney, All Rights Reserved


Mary Catherine

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Let go of your fears . . .