I SETTLE MY KINGDOM - JULIETTE'S STORY
If I date my "conversion" from the previous day, I may quite well look on this afternoon as my "confirmation." Until then I had been a man just with ordinary desires. Now physical union with a woman became quite a secondary consideration with me. The fascination of domination held me, and though, of course, I had both Muriel and Juliette as my mistresses, that was more for their pleasure than my own. For myself I was their master, they were my slaves.
I quickly settled my kingdom, and as a first proof of my position, I demanded and obtained a latch-key. With this I was able to make surprise visits, but I will say this for Muriel, she gave me no cause for jealousy. She was quite content, for the time at any rate, with me, and although she admitted that it was quite a surprise to her to find herself submitting to any man, still she loved me for mastering her - or so she said.
With Juliette, however, she was quite different. She did not exactly bear malice, but she evidently meant to get her own back. She was, however, quite aware that I would not tolerate any sly vengeance; I had made that quite clear to her; but I could see that she meant, on the first opportunity, to pay Juliette out. Nor had she any intention of giving up the autocratic sway she had wielded for many years. She put this quite frankly to me one evening.
"It's all very well for you, Cecil," she said, "you have mastered me - much to my surprise, I admit - still, you have mastered me, and I love you for it. But with Juliette, it's different. I've always had her as a subject; when we were at school together she fagged for me, and I used to whip her if I wasn't satisfied with her."
"At school together?" I repeated.
"Yes, didn't you know?"
"No, Juliette said she would tell me someday how your domination of her began - that was that afternoon you caught us in the morning-room and got caught yourself," I added maliciously. "But she said it was too long a story to tell then."
"Well, shall we have her in and tell you now?"
"If you like."
She rang the bell, and Juliette came in. "Juliette, Cecil says you promised to tell him how we got to know each other. Sit down and do so now." She was sitting on my knee with her arm round my neck.
Juliette hesitated. "Go on," said Muriel. "You haven't forgotten Clifton and South Parade? Let me see, it was Maude Jeffreys who began it, wasn't it?"
"Who was Maude Jeffreys?" I asked.
"She was a beast," said Juliette, and she stopped.
"Go on," I said.
"I was only a little child about eleven, and she was fifteen. I hated her and so did most of the girls. She was so strong, though, that they were afraid of her. All the bigger girls at school had little girl friends - mignons they used to call them - who used to fag for them and ... do other things."
"Oh," I said.
Juliette blushed. "Well, Maude couldn't get anyone to be her mignon till I came, and no one took me up - you were away that term, Muriel, with scarlet fever - and all the other girls had their mignons, so she seized on me. I knew nothing at all then about things. I had come straight from home. Maude told me to fag for her, and as I saw the other girls of my own age fagging for the other big girls, I took it as a matter of course. They all seemed to like it, and got sweets and petted in return. Sometimes, too, the bigger girls called their mignons to them after the lights were out and I used to hear kisses and soft words of endearment. I thought nothing of that, I only wished someone would pet me ... but not Maude, I never wanted her to pet me, she was such a beast ... she didn't wash, ugh!
"One day, after I had been at school a week, one of the bigger girls had cause to complain about her mignon. Something or other had not been done to her liking, and when we went up to bed, I was surprised to be told not to undress at once. The other little girls evidently knew what was coming. The culprit was brought into my room - I slept in the biggest dormitory, with most of the little girls - and after a lecture from her senior, she was told to 'go down.' She was quite undressed and bent across a bed. Then her senior took a little cane out of her box and gave her about a dozen smart cuts on her little behind. The child sobbed and got up and went back to her own room. I was stupefied, but the rest of the girls seemed to like it and to take it as a matter of course. I was told I could now undress, and did so, feeling very nervous and uncomfortable. When I was in bed and the lights were out, I heard Maude calling me. I went over to her bed.
'Get into bed with me,' she said, 'I want to talk to you.' I did so very shyly. 'You saw Elsie get whipped?' 'Yes.' 'Well, that's what happens to naughty girls here, so be careful. If little girls don't do as they are told, their seniors whip them. How would you like me to whip you?' 'Oh, Maude, please.' 'Well, mind you don't deserve it.'
"I didn't like the turn the conversation was taking and moved to get out of bed, but Maude put her arm round me. 'No, you are not to go yet. You've never been in bed with any of the other girls, have you?' 'No.' 'Ah, well kiss me, kiddy.' I didn't much want to, but I did as she said. I was surprised to find not only her lips but her tongue meet my lips. I drew back, but couldn't get away. Her hand moved down and began to pull up my night-dress. I could feel my cheeks burning with hot blushes. 'You've got quite a nice little bottom for your age; it will be rather nice to smack.' 'Oh, Maude, don't ... it's rude.' She laughed. 'Give me your hand.' She took it, and before I knew what she was doing, placed it between her legs. 'Don't take it away, but do as I do.' She pulled my night-dress right up and roughly put her hand between my legs to ... oh, how ashamed and frightened I was. 'Oh, don't, please Maude, don't,' I said, and tried to take her hand away. 'Silly little fool, do as I tell you.' But I was too upset and burst out crying. 'Shut up, you idiot, or you'll be sorry. You shall pay for this tomorrow. Go back to your own bed.' I crept miserably back and sobbed myself to sleep. The next evening Maude told me not to get into bed until she told me. She then called the other seniors together and explained the case, while I stood in my night-dress. She was not popular, but the rule at South Parade was strict. A senior had an unquestioned right to punish her mignon, and though they didn't like her, the other seniors, for their own sakes, would not encourage insubordination in a mignon. Besides, as I learnt afterwards, they all used their mignons as Maude had tried to use me, and would not listen to any frightened protests on my part. So I had to bend over the bed, as I had seen the other little girl the night before. Maude borrowed a cane and, lifting my night-dress, gave me ten hard cuts on my poor little behind. Oh, the pain and shame of that first whipping. I shall never forget it. I sobbed and twisted and kicked, but Maude held me down with one hand quite easily. All the time she was whipping me she was jeering at me. 'Isn't it rude, eh, Miss Modesty? Fancy showing your nakedness to the whole dormitory.'"
"When she had finished she said: 'Now go to bed and come to me when the lights are out.' I crept into bed, and, soon after, the lights were out. I didn't move, but soon heard Maude calling me. As I didn't answer, she came across to my bed and roughly pulled down the clothes. She turned me over on my face and pulled up my night-dress and began whipping me again. I screamed but she kept my head pressed down into the pillow, which muffled the cries. She must have given me quite twenty or thirty before she stopped. 'Now, will you come to my bed?' I was too hurt and frightened to resist any more and followed her miserably, and did all she told me to do."
"Oh, how I hated doing it, and hated her for making me. I was too young to get any pleasure myself and, as I said, she didn't wash."
I laughed - I couldn't help it, and so did Muriel.
"It's all very well to laugh, but it was beastly."
"I expect so," I said. "But go on."
"Well, things went on like this. Maude was always getting into rows with her head-mistress, Mrs. Walter, and after getting punished herself used to get her own back on me. At last one day she was caught cheating in form and the whole school - there were about twenty of us - were summoned to the big schoolroom. I knew Mrs. Walter used to whip the girls, though up till then I had escaped, and the whippings were in private. This time, however, Mrs. Walter came in to us and read us all a lecture on dishonesty and then called Maude out before all of us, and, after lecturing her, sent her away with the French mistress to get ready for punishment. She then told us to go into the punishment room. I had never been in this room, known as the Vale of Tears among the girls, before. It was a large empty room right at the top of the house. The only furniture it contained was a cupboard, a long narrow table with broad straps on each side hanging down, a sort of vaulting horse, and a moveable scaling ladder fixed to one of the walls. There were forms round the side of the room, on which we girls sat and waited. After a minute or two, Mrs. Walter came in with the other mistresses. She rang a bell and the door at the other end of the room opened and in came mademoiselle leading Maude. The latter was a curious figure. She was naturally fat and lumpy, and her present costume did not improve her appearance. She wore a flannel dressing-gown, hind part in front, her face was blotched with fright, and she could barely walk. She looked such a ridiculous figure that in my astonishment and nervousness I giggled.
"'Who laughed,' said Mrs. Walter at once. I stood up trembling. 'Did you laugh?' 'Yes, madam,' I stammered, 'I didn't mean to ... but Maude looks so funny.' 'Hm, she won't look funny soon. Let me see, you're a new girl.' 'Yes, madam.' 'Oh, and you have not been present at a punishment before? Well, let it be a lesson to you. Come here, Miss Jeffreys.'"
"Maude approached and stood trembling. 'You were detected trying to copy your French exercises from the girl next to you.' 'Yes, madam.' 'Very good, you know what to expect?'"
"She signed to the French and Second mistresses, who took hold of Maude and led her to the table and laid her face downwards on it, so that her legs hung over at one end, buckling the straps which hung on each side tight across her back, one just below her shoulders, one across her waist, and one just across her hips. Mrs. Walter had gone to the cupboard and taken out a long cane. She came back to her victim and undid the dressing-gown. I realised now why it was backside front. As the buttons were undone, so it fell apart on either side, showing that Maude only had on a chemise. This was raised as high as possible and Maude's fat coarse behind fully exposed to view. Madam raised the cane to the full sweep of her arm and the first cut fell. I have never heard such a yell as came from Maude's lips. A second cut fell just in the same place, followed by another shriek. The elder girls smiled. Maude was notoriously a coward. But Mrs. Walter went on methodically with the whipping, taking no heed of the cries. Only when Maude began to kick, she said, 'Keep still, or you shall be tied.' But Maude's legs continued to fly about, making a most indecent exposure. At last when she had given ten cuts, each of which had left its mark, Mrs. Walter drew back and signed to the two mistresses and pointed to the horse. They wheeled that into the middle of the room, undid Maude, and led her to it. They bent her over it, and while one of them fastened her wrists to the two legs on one side, the other stretched her legs apart and tied her ankles to the other two legs. All that we girls could see was Maude's bottom wealed by the cane and her legs and what was usually hidden between. Mrs. Walter now put back the cane and armed herself with a long birch. If the cane had made Maude yell with pain, the birch made her scream. But Mrs. Walter took no notice. Down came the birch on the fat cheeks, until they were all crimson and purple. Quicker and quicker fell the blows, until at last most of the twigs had broken off and only a stump was left in her hands. Then she stopped and the mistresses undid Maude, who could scarcely stand, so shaken and weak with sobbing was she."
"'Will you cheat again?'
"No, madam," she stammered, kneeling down.
"Very good, take her away."
"That was the first whipping I saw at South Parade. We were dismissed and I noticed that most of the seniors retired to their studies with their mignons. I was congratulating myself that I should be free from Maude for some time; the whipping would, I thought, keep her mind busy. But I was disappointed."
"'Maude wants you, Juliette, in the dormitory,' said a small girl. I didn't dare not to go. I found Maude in bed sobbing. 'Oh there you are, you little beast, are you? So you laughed at me, did you? Well, I'll pay you out for that, my girl, when I'm fit again. Now I want you to put some cream on my legs; you'll find some on my dressing table.'"
"I found some cold cream. Maude turned over on her face. 'Pull the clothes down, and put it on, and mind you be gentle.' I didn't relish the task of anointing her behind, you may be sure, but the sight of her behind and battered flesh pleased me much. She lay and moaned the whole time, muttering abuse of Mrs. Walter, until I had finished. That night she left me alone, she was too stiff and sore, though she had to show her behind to the whole dormitory (that was a custom of South Parade, and not even the biggest girls escaped doing it after a whipping). But the next night ... I had to pay for laughing at her and she made me do everything to her, ugh."
"Yes, not only fingers ... I had to ... pah."
"Poor little girl, but it didn't last, did it?" said Muriel.
"No, thank goodness, you came back and won me from her."
"Yes, that was a custom at South Parade. No senior could take a mignon from another senior unless she won her. Sometimes seniors exchanged mignons by agreement, but usually if a senior fancied a mignon she had to fight for her and win her. Oh, it was quite a formal affair. The Bedroom was cleared, a ring was formed, the mignon was perched naked on a chest of drawers, and the two combatants, also naked, fought with knotted towels which they flicked at each other. No wrestling or holding was allowed. I shall never forget that fight for me. There was that fat ugly Maude with her coarse skin and dark thick hair, while you, darling, looked so frail beside her. Oh, I did hope you would win."
"Well, what happened?"
"Oh, I won," laughed Muriel. "I'd had experience at home with my brother George. He'd learnt the game at school and used to practice on me in the holidays."
"Oh, did he?"
"With our night-gowns on, of course, you naughty boy. Well, I'd learnt the trick of wetting the end of the towel and I could aim much better than Maude. I was quicker on my feet too, and she was such an awful coward. She nearly gave in after I had touched her once or twice on the thighs, and at last when I got in a special cut of my brother's, right between her legs, she howled out: 'Oh, take the little beast, I don't want her,' and went to bed."
"Yes, and you have had me ever since, haven't you?" said Juliette, flinging her arms round Muriel. "I loved you then and I love you still, in spite of your cruelty to me sometimes."
"But how? ... Why?..."
"You mean, how does Juliette come to be here?"
"Well, she was at school with you ... but..."
"Oh, you mean you thought she was my maid. Oh, that's your mistake. She told me when you called that she was sure from your manner that you took her for the maid, and we agreed to keep it up as long as we could. No, she's my companion really. Tell him how it came about, Juliette."