Crash! Bang! Wallop!
He looks quite cute with that perplexed look on his face, doesn’t he? No? Well, I think so and that’s all that counts really.
“A photo, Peter! A photo of your bum! Your ‘red-because-it’s-just-been-spanked’ bum! If I use the right setting on the new camera I could probably get a fairly decent one. I don’t think I’d even have to use colour enhance on it.”
By now the perplexed look was changing to one of ‘hissy fit meets indignant outrage’ with a smattering of fear thrown in for good measure. I think he might have known I wasn’t serious but he wasn’t 100% sure.
Well, we’ve never believed that his brain engages in the way that other peoples do and with a smarting backside to contend with, the chances of concentration on anything other than rubbing the sting out of it are even less. At least I think he was trying to rub the sting out of it – he might have been trying to keep it covered in case I whipped our camera out and ran off a couple of shots.
“And then I’m going to print off a dozen copies of it and plaster them all over the house. You know, the way that some women put pictures of themselves on the fridge to remind them they are on a diet? Perhaps a photo of exactly what happens to you when you play up will help you to remember why you should Bloody Well Behave!”
And yes, that last bit was shouted. There’s only so much a man can take you know and I’ve never claimed to be perfect.
The hissy fit won the day and made its presence known. He couldn’t give it his all because it’s a bit difficult to do with his trousers and pants round his ankles – it doesn’t allow for foot stamping to any satisfying degree. Trust me on this, I’ve had a lot of experience watching him try it and it just can’t be done. Not with any sort of style anyway and Peter generally chooses style over veracity when it comes to the unimportant.
I cut him off in mid-hiss.
“Stop right there! Look, you might not realise this but I don’t actually mind smacking your arse, I quite like it to be honest,” (cue shocked glare) “and I’ll continue to smack it as and when needs be.”
That’s me signed up for the next 50 years then.
“But. This is too much. You can’t just do as you like and think that I’ll sort everything out for you later on. You’re using me, Peter. You’re putting all the onus on me for solving the problems without taking on any responsibility for yourself. In fact, it’s as though you’re deliberately creating problems just to see if I will solve them. Instead of going forwards, we seem to be going backwards lately.”
With hindsight, that might not have been the right thing to say. Not in that way and not at that precise time.
His face paled and his eyes became unnaturally bright with tears... and not crocodile tears either, which is what normally happens when he tries to get round me and thinks I won’t or can’t tell the difference. These ones he was trying to hold back.
I quickly grabbed him and hauled him into an embrace, holding him tightly within my arms where, after a brief ineffectual struggle, I could feel him shake with emotion. I knew what was the matter with him and it went much further than this one incident of stubbornness and lack of common sense. I’m not sure I wasn’t right to spank him but I knew there was something deeper at hand here than the reason he’d just been walloped for. I should have dealt with that first.
“I’m... I’m... I can’t...”
He voice cracked as he tried to catch his breath and his attempt at speaking, at explaining, faded to nothing as his worries overrode him.
“Yes. I know. Hush now, don’t cry. I’m sorry... I said that all wrong. I’m sorry.”
He took a large shuddering breath and burrowed into my embrace.
“I know you’re scared and worried. But we’ve spoken about this. We’ve gone over all the plans, all the expectations, the timescales and we know it can be done. You know it can be done. We know you’re more than capable of seeing this through. Haven’t we always known you’re capable of this?”
He nodded from somewhere inside the haven of my cuddle. That could have been reassuring if it hadn’t been followed by what sounded like wet and messy sniffs which didn’t bode well for the front of my shirt.
“I told you yesterday that you could use my computer but you refused. Said it was too old and slow. If you’d changed your mind all you had to do was tell me and I would have let you. You didn’t have to sneak in here the minute my back was turned and then let loose with a major strop when it all went wrong. None of this is anyone’s fault but your own. And you weren’t spanked for touching my things – that was an unfair accusation Peter.”
Peter squirmed in embarrassment which I knew was his way of acknowledging the point being made. Saying serious things out loud was uncomfortable for Peter but his body language normally spoke quite adequately for him.
He likes to be in control of his emotions and he hates floundering or feeling out of his depth. He has this weird habit of when he feels like that he tries to convert it into a situation that he can control, and that’s normally the hissy fit stage. Occasionally it’s the pouty or sulky stage but that’s not very often. All of which are masks which allow him to say what he wants to without letting too much real emotion through. I understand that about him. Not everybody feels comfortable showing their fears to the world, even if that world is the boyfriend who would accept them and not think him weak for having them.
What it is basically is masking what’s really worrying him by going totally over the top and hoping that I can pick out the real reason amongst all the guff and histrionics.
“And you knew this would happen and that you’d get in trouble for it Peter. You can’t possibly have expected for there to have been no consequences to what you did, so that’s what I meant earlier by you looking for me to sort out the problems. A spanking doesn’t always make everything go away and you angling for one (cue extreme squirming), whether intentional or not, so you can de-stress is not on. If that’s what you think you want or need at times, then you tell me and we’ll sort something out, but don’t go looking for situations that force me to punish you just so that you can feel better afterwards.”
“Don’t feel better,” came the low grumble in answer to that.
“No, I bet you don’t, and I don’t only mean your bottom.”
Let me explain something about my other half. Peter is actually incredibly good at his job. He’s a CAD technician, something he’s probably mentioned before. That’s Computer Aided Design for those of you who aren’t aware of it. And no, it doesn’t mean he designs shirts or nifty hats – he designs buildings and town planning schemes. He doesn’t create the plans – that’s down to the architects – but he takes those plans and converts them into a 3D version that gives an illusion of what the finished project will actually look like. It can also allow a virtual tour inside and out. It’s a great bonus for the client rather than relying on 2D drawings, which to the untrained eye look like nothing more than 6 million lines all over the place.
He’d always been interested in art and drawing and with the technology boom that’s happened over the last ‘x’ amount of years, he decided to try and combine the two. He put his name down for a course at his local poly after doing a self taught crammer course to get the basics and finding that he liked it and wanted to learn more.
The course didn’t quite go exactly as he expected. First off it turned out that he knew more than the teacher giving the course. Whether that speaks volumes for Peter’s abilities or very little for the local poly at hiring someone not very au fait with the subject, I don’t know. The second thing to happen was that he met me after he was asked if he was interested in joining the staff to teach the course he’d signed up for. He started earning a scandalous amount of money per hour and didn’t know what to do with it so he was recommended to the estate agents that I own and run after floating the idea with some of the other teachers of renting a nicer place than the rather grotty studio flat he was currently in.
Two years after that we’d been living together for one and he’d moved on from the Polytechnic into working freelance for the local government – something that paid even better money actually.
But he found it boring. He enjoyed the work itself but didn’t much like what it was that he was working on. Extensions to Town Hall annexes. New conference rooms for the Mayor. An underpass on Sutton Way. New playground at the local park – which he did admit was fun. Designing the vamped up pedestrian zone that replaced the High Street once the through road was diverted to Howlets & Brampton Road – although I think he also enjoyed that one as it was the most ‘complete’ project that he’d had to date rather than being responsible for just a section of things. Basically he hankered after having a go at the ‘whole show’ of something. Hence the branching out.
Being employed by the local government on an agency basis meant that he was still free to take on other work in his own time so he put a few feelers out and gradually a trickle of work came his way. Nothing big, nothing that was going to shoot his name to the top of the list of Architecture Today magazine – if it exists – but enough to encourage him that, yes, he could do it, and do it quite well actually. Every job getting just that little bit better and a little bit more intricate. And then the Big One.
A request by well known local architect firm on behalf of an even more well known retail company to work up some plans for a whole office block, exterior and interior, to be the showplace for their new Head Offices. It was what he’d been waiting for.
Now, as much as my Mum laughingly calls us ‘the old married couple’, we haven’t got to the stage of having the gay equivalent of ‘His & Hers’ towels. What we do have is ‘His & His’ computers. We both do quite a bit of work from home, him more than me but I do occasionally have to bring stuff home, especially since the ‘Let’s buy a house at auction and see what happens’ boom, buoyed up by the TV programmes that show the success stories of such ventures.
I do quite a lot of work with overseas clients making purchases by proxy, so I have to be available out of office hours for the odd ‘urgent’ email so it makes sense to keep my old pc at home. Peter has a state-of-the-art-all-fads-and-fancies laptop while I get away with a massive old monster that runs Windows 98. Not extremely reliable, I know, but it suits my purposes and needs and as I don’t tend to run anything complicated on it, it’s quite stable as long as you don’t breathe too loudly near it.
Something that Peter knows perfectly well as he’s always nagging me to get rid of it and update to something better. The problem being that Peter knowing something, and Peter taking notice of what he knows, don’t always coincide.
The other problem is that to take on this new project he’s had his laptop sent back to the shop to get a super-doopah graphics card put in it so he can do justice to the design he’s working on. I’m not convinced it was necessary but he wasn’t satisfied with the quality of the images he was getting so it was his call. Four days they told him it would take and we’re now on day six and he’s frantic. Not because he thinks he won’t get it back but because he’s just aching to get on with things and has an idea on the boil for the entrance hall that he’s chomping at the bit to get working on and although he’s cheeky at the best of times, he wouldn’t actually go so far as to do some of his private work on the computer system at the local council.
He’s done quite well and mocked up some ideas on paper and it looks good. All that remains is getting it onto his main work. I caught him giving covert glances at my pc all day yesterday and this morning, trying to gauge whether he could risk asking for a loan of it. I wouldn’t deny him my pc but we both know that it can’t really cope with his Cad Cam programme and I’d had enough Blue Screens of Death on the bugger that I prefer him not to use it for complex work, especially if I have other programmes running at the same time. Yes, ridiculous and it’s all Bill Gates’s fault, but knowing that doesn’t stop the fact that it happens.
And trying to blame my Mother for ringing me and keeping me on the phone for 20 minutes is just not on. He claims that he was only going to be a minute and he could have programmed the change in design in next to no time - which we both knew to be a lie - and been out of there before I came back into the room.
Best laid plans of mice, men and Peters.
I became aware of ‘the problem’ when he swore, loudly and with intense feeling, from the dining room that doubles as a study, being that our kitchen is big enough to hold a table and we prefer casual eating most of the time, which was followed by an equally loud ‘bang’ as something paid the price of his ire. The ‘something’ was the mouse being slammed onto the desk top in frustration as, predictably, my pc had its own hissy fit, and then knocking the table lamp over which fell to the floor breaking the moulding and causing the bulb to explode.
So. My computer had the Crash, the table top and the lamp had the Bang and then his arse had the Wallop. Never did like Tommy Steele much though. Too many teeth.
“Go on, scoot,” I released him and pushed him gently away. “You know where to go.” A firm tap to his bottom as he bent to pull his clothes back into place had him moving quickly out the door of the study and towards the living room where he buried himself in his corner while I busied myself clearing up the mess. I suppose I should have made him do it but he needed time to calm down over this and forcing him to clean things up would have just reminded him of why he’d got into this state in the first place. He needed to disassociate himself for a while and he does that in the corner. Had it been any other occasion after a normal temper tantrum – if such a thing exists – I would have left it there for him to sort out afterwards. Not today.
Now I don’t profess to understand all of this really but I do kind of get that although he doesn’t like – absolutely hates actually – getting spanked, he likes the fact that I’m prepared to do it. That I’ll bother setting him right. A team of wild horses wouldn’t be enough to drag that confession from him though but I think that if it wasn’t true he would have at least mentioned the fact that me walloping him was slightly unfair some time during our 5 years together, although to be honest I’ve only spent the last 3 years spanking him. Sometimes it seems like three continuous years.
He hasn’t muttered one single word about it though and considering he has an opinion on, and is willing to share it often, everything from the garden gnomes of Mrs Crosby at No. 27 to global warming passing by continental rail travel – and you’ll be amazed to know that the more serious the subject the more sense he makes, it’s only with the mundane and non important things that he lets loose his irrelevance - I feel sure that he would have said something by now.
Oh yes, he moans about it. He whines and sulks and whinges as well come to think of it and he swears blind that I don’t need to do it – normally about 30 seconds before I’m about to do it – but he’s never once sat down in the calm of the day and said ‘Alex, we need to talk’ and tried to get me to agree not to spank him. The day he does that, I’ll listen to him.
From the very first day that we accidentally fell into this type of relationship through frustration on my behalf and an inability to keep his gob shut on his, we’ve carried on in the same vein. That first time wasn’t particularly a hard spanking – not compared to some of the ones he’s had since – but I think it didn’t need to be. The shock that both of us experienced when we realised what I was doing was quite profound and if my memory serves me right, he got something like half a dozen smacks turned over my knee and was promptly put right way up again with a look of horrified amazement on his face and eyes that were about to fall out of his head. And I didn’t even have his trousers down! I don’t think I’ve ever seen him, neither before nor since, with his mouth open and him not talking nineteen to the dozen. Well actually, I have, but this is not that sort of story.
I also think that we’re going to be this way until one of us gets taken off for the old daisy pushing up appointment and, strangely enough, I don’t actually mind that idea. I’m trying really hard to not think of Peter in his 70’s stealing next door’s pizza or playing practical jokes on people but I don’t hold out much hope. The only good thing is that he might have arthritis by then so he should be easier to catch. Of course, being older than him I might be in a worse state, in which case I’ll buy myself one of those motorised scooters to chase after him with and that way I’ll have the added advantage that I’ll already be sitting down and ready to pull him over my knee.
The point is, from that first time we slowly worked our way towards a balance that suited us both. Slowly and cautiously, feeling our way. I think I told him that he could expect a hot bottom if he didn’t behave himself in future and he flounced a bit and then grumped out into the kitchen but he didn’t tell me No. He didn’t call off our relationship ... he didn’t threaten to go to the police. He did come to bed afterwards very contrite and a bit nervy and very much in need of a cuddle which, being Peter, turned into a need for sex within 3 minutes. I was just as happy to provide that as I had been to provide the other half an hour earlier.
So. Without much discussion – which probably goes against all the rule books, if they exist – we developed our own version of a discipline relationship. I couldn’t have told him at the beginning what would earn him a spanking because I didn’t know myself. And I wasn’t going to start spanking him for every little thing that he did – no, it was reserved either for the rare times that he got so outside of himself and in such a state that he needed someone to make a stand, sort of ‘OK, that’s it, that’s enough!’ – kind of like a watershed - or, more commonly, when I was exasperated with him and his antics. A case of spank him or strange him.
He could talk the hind legs off a donkey and given half a chance will rationalise anything and everything until it fits how he wants it to fit and even though you can see on his face that he knows he’s out of order, he’ll carry on if he thinks there’s the slightest chance of getting away with it or of prolonging the discussion long enough that you give up and wander off with a headache.
Cornertime came along by accident. Yes, a Peter-generated-accident once again, but that’s not what I mean. Something happened, I can’t quite remember what, but I know it involved him dropping half a dozen glasses on the kitchen floor and them shattering all over the place. I think we were reorganising the kitchen cupboards and moving things around and he was trying to do it as fast as possible by grabbing hold of a stack of glasses and I’d been on at him to stop rushing around madly and do things properly.
Anyway, because he has the habit of running around the house with no shoes on – he says slippers are for old men but I think it’s just that he doesn’t want to have a possible weapon to hand in case I might have need of it – he was in danger of stepping on something and I was a bit pissed off at him because if he hadn’t been trying to carry so much stuff he wouldn’t have dropped them.
First thought though was to make sure he didn’t tread on anything so I barked at him to move out of the way and stay still. The only way he could move was backwards and that had him nicely hemmed in at the corner, looking nervous. He made to come out a couple of times but a Look put a stop to that and when he attempted a sidle towards the door leading to the hall I stepped towards him briskly with a threatening stamp of my own and he zipped back into the corner.
I left him there while I swept up all the broken glass and then I washed the floor with him still there on pain of death if he moved and I think he thought he might get spanked if he disobeyed me, so he stayed where he was. Of course, after that the floor was wet and he whinged at me about not wanting to walk on it and get soggy socks – something that doesn’t seem to worry him when he chooses to rush out in the garden to chase next door’s cat away from the bird table which is madness in itself because no birds have ever been known to stop by for a snack so I think it’s just that he hates that cat – so I told him he could stay there until it dried and it would be an appropriate punishment for him. I think he was so worried about what I’d do to him if he moved beyond his dry patch that he considered moving in there and staking squatters rights not to leave ever – or at least without a police escort for safety. That was the end of it though; I didn’t spank him for that because it didn’t warrant it, not in my eyes.
Some time after that though, he did something that did warrant a spanking, which he duly received and was none too happy about. God, but the boy is a squirmer!
I was particularly annoyed with him that time but as much as spanking him serves two purposes, one, to make him repent his actions and two, to dispel any ill feelings I might have towards him for said actions, it doesn’t always have an immediate effect on me. Sorry if that’s not how it’s meant to be, but it’s how it is. But I’m aware that I can’t just keep on spanking him until I feel better, it’s meant to be until I think he’s got the point. This means that, yeah, sometimes, even after I’ve stopped, there’s a bit of me that is still annoyed with him. Not a lot and not often - as I said, the idea of the spanking is to forgo the rows and arguments but sometimes it’s still there and I need to calm down myself. This was one of those occasions and he must have seen it in my face because as soon as I let him up, he backed off and practically rushed off to the corner as though it was his safe house where the baddies couldn’t get at him. I know it’s seen as quite traditional for Brats to get corner time but I think we use it differently than most people. It’s a ‘time-out’ opportunity for both of us.
So, he was safely in his corner and probably only slightly happier to be there than still with me threatening to take pictures of his bum.
No doubt he could hear me clicking away at the keyboard trying to recover some of my work but it was no good. All the figures and information I’d entered had been lost and I wasn’t in the mood to redo them. It wouldn’t have been fair on Peter either to spend the next hour going over them because he would have beat himself up with guilt. I closed down my programmes and decided to call it a day. I had all my notes on paper anyway so I could catch up with them tomorrow in the safety of my Peter-proof office.
When I eventually called Peter in, he shuffled in expecting a lecture; I could see it in his face. As I motioned him over he started mumbling.
“Sorry Alex. Really, I didn’t mean for...” I stopped him with a mild Look and said, “Hey! Shush! That’s been dealt with now.”
He smiled tremulously with something akin to relief and continued, “Um... did you manage to save any of it?”
“No. Come here, you absolute horror,” as I pulled him to me slipping a hand round his waist and securing him to me as I sat at my desk.
“I’ve put everything back where it was and I’ve closed down my programmes as I think they’ve had enough of a bashing tonight and aren’t up to any more attacks from Hurricane Peter. Don’t you dare giggle at me, you little toe rag! Now, if I let you loose on here, can you promise not to wipe out my hard disc and not to go sneaking a peek at all the pictures of nude men I have hidden?”
“Nude men? What do you mean, nude men?” he spluttered before it dawned on him that I was winding him up, whereupon he dealt me a mock punch to the arm. Then, what I had said before that, made its way through to his guilt fogged brain and he looked unbelievably hopeful.
“Really? Can I? Only I’ve got this great idea for the entrance hall and the facing of the building and I think I can improve what the architects have come up with because they haven’t taken into account the way the building will be facing and the light will be fantastic if I make the front doors into a wall of glass instead of the way they’ve got it... and I want to do another option to show them so they can put it to the clients... they won’t mind, I’ve worked with them before and as long as I present the work according to their designs, they don’t mind me giving alternatives once their version is done. I think they’ll love it because I can redesign the reception area and they’d gain so much space but I want to get it sorted while I’m on a roll...”
All of this said as he was absentmindedly manhandling me out of my chair and hurriedly lowering himself, complete with small wince, into my place.
As he slotted his programme disc into place and drummed his fingers waiting for it to load, he continued burbling.
“This is going to be sooo good, I’m a genius really... you know I might have to up my prices after this. Come on. Come on. Come on!” This last bit muttered as ‘encouragement’ to my pc to get a move on and load things quicker than the 30 seconds it normally takes.
“Peter!” I said warningly. He had the grace to smile apologetically, mutter a soft ‘Sorry’ and stop wiggling the mouse around in the vain hope that this would make things work faster. I don’t think he’s worked out that mouse-jiggling isn’t a recognised systems operational aid.
“And I’ve got a brilliant idea for the showrooms they want set up on the 2nd floor... I’m going to make the outside wall a ‘shop window’ so that they can stage their latest ranges there when they’re doing a promotion, or we could swap over the offices to the other side of the building so that the showroom is on the side that faces the by-pass and if we then put in giant glass panels instead, then they could have either oversized advert panelling slipped in according to the range or even have them set up as giant screens. This company does some great adverts for TV so they could have them projected on the screens. It would be stunning and...”
I left him to it knowing that he could go on for hours and it didn’t matter if I answered him or not, he was in his own little world now. I rolled my eyes in resignation and started towards the kitchen where his voice followed me at full force two minutes later.
“Aleeeexxxxx! Put the kettle on will you... I’m gasping. And can you do me a sandwich as well... not ham though; you bought the cheap stuff again and it’s horrible. I’ll have cheese. Ta.”
See what I mean... spank him or strangle him.