But there is something strange about the scene for the two of them are not sitting talking, neither are they ignoring eachother, each lost in their own private thoughts. No, the girl is face down over the lap of the man, her skirt is bunched up around her waist, her knickers down around her knees. In her small, soft hand she holds a pocket watch and as the hand second hand ticks round to mark off another minute she murmurs some words in Russian. As soon as he hears the words the man brings his open palm down hard on the girl’s bare bottom, reddening the area he spanks, an area that is already red. Six times the man’s hand comes down and the girl moans softly and writhes across his lap. ________
Lara knew there was a mistake the moment she boarded the train in Moscow. It was a journey she had made many times before, the overnight sleeper to St. Petersburg. She had flown into Moscow three days before to spend some time with her brother before making the train journey north to her mother’s house in St. Petersburg. She always liked to travel on the famous Red Arrow train, the Krasnaya Strela. It was her brother who had booked the ticket for the train and therefore he who had made the mistake. Lara always travelled first class in the Spalny Vagon and invariably when the ticket was purchased it was for both berths in the compartment giving her the luxury, and security of travelling alone. This time, that had not happened and Lara, checking her ticket found that only one berth had been reserved. Her brother had compounded the error by booking the ticket in his own name, which was why it was that when Lara entered the compartment she found that, not only did she not have it to herself, but also that she would be sharing with a man. Of course, she could have made a fuss, but she was experienced enough to know that complaining would have got her nowhere, indeed it might end up making things worse and she would have to endure the journey in the crowded, communal atmosphere of ‘Platskartny’, third class. So she said nothing, merely smiled a brief greeting to the businessman who was sitting on the edge of his bunk reading a newspaper. He acknowledged her greeting with a nod of his head.
Lara stowed her things in the under-bunk locker already having made her mind up that she would stay fully dressed and sleep on top of the bunk; she had no intention of getting changed for bed in front of this stranger. So she kicked off her shoes, lay on the bed and got out the book she had brought for the journey; it was a Thomas Hardy novel that she had first read at school. She lay back to read as the train pulled out of the station and began its journey through the night.
For the first hour there was silence between them. Lara read her book, occasionally glancing up to sneak a sly look at the man who still seemed absorbed in his newspaper. Eventually, it was he who spoke first, breaking the tension and when he spoke he did so not in Russian but English.
“Are you English?” he asked.
Lara shook her head and replied in Russian “No I’m Russian.”
‘That’s a difficult book for a Russian girl,’ he commented.
Lara smiled “I’ve spent the last seven years in England, at boarding school there. My English is as good as my Russian.”
“An English boarding school? An interesting choice for a Russian girl. I take it that our own schools aren’t good enough for you?” Lara flushed slightly, sensing the hostility in the question. “No, it’s not like that. I didn’t have any choice in the matter. My father died when I was very young. He left a lot of money in trust for my education and stipulated that he wanted me to go to school in England. I come back every holiday but now school has finished and I’m back home for good. This is home, Russia is my motherland.”
“What is your name?” the man asked, regarding her with his cold blue eyes. “Larissa Talenski,” Lara replied. “But everybody calls me Lara.”
“So Lara Talenski… did you enjoy your English education?”
“Yes,” Lara replied, with a smile, hoping that he might smile too. “I made a lot of good friends and learned a lot too.”
The man maintained his emotionless expression. “It is good to learn,” he commented, “Good to learn those things that make for character and self-discipline. Did you learn those things Lara Talenski?”
Lara was starting to feel very self-conscious under the intensity of his questions. “I guess so…” she replied, feeling herself blush a little under his unremitting gaze.
“They treated you strictly?” the man asked, “Do they still use the cane in English schools?”
Lara felt herself blush even more. “It was strict, yes. But corporal punishment was abolished years ago. And I’m very glad about that!” she tried to lighten the tone but he was having none of it. “A pity. Girls like you need strong discipline.”
Lara felt a flash of anger run through her. “What do you mean? Girls like me? You don’t know me. You have no idea who I am or what I am like.”
The man smiled for the first time, but the smile held no warmth. “That is where you are wrong Lara Talenski. I know you very well. You are rich and spoiled and arrogant. As was your father before you.”
“My father?” Lara gasped “But…” “Vladamir Talenski. I knew him well. Rich, spoiled, arrogant. He deserved to die young.”
The anger that had flashed up inside Lara now burned fierce and clear. How dare he insult the memory of her father… her ‘Daddy’… the man she had never known but had idolized all her life. Before she knew what she was doing she was on her feet. She drew her hand back and slapped the man full across his face, catching him again with the back of her hand as she brought it back for a second blow. She never got to slap him a third time for his reactions were lightning fast and suddenly he had her wrists in his hands, his grip like steel.
“That was a very foolish thing to do Lara Talenski,” he said softly “Very foolish indeed.”
Lara tried to pull her wrists away but he was far stronger than she.
“You have no idea who I am, who you have just assaulted do you?”
Lara felt the hot anger drain away to be replaced by a cold fear. She shook her head.
“Does the name Mikael Dmitriov mean anything to you?” he asked. Lara’s soft gasp told him that she recognized the name only too well. This man was the businessman her mother worked for. The man on whom her mother depended for her livelihood. It was a good job, a highly paid job and it was a job that her mother needed.
“Please, I’m sorry… I just lost my temper…. please… for my Mother’s sake,” Lara begged.
“Your mother is a good woman. And it would be wrong for her to suffer on behalf of her daughter. It is not her fault that an expensive English education has failed to teach you self-restraint and self-discipline. It is you, not her, who must be disciplined.” Dmitriov released Lara’s wrists. “Stay there and don’t try to run away.” He ordered. He got up from his bunk and opened the door of the compartment. He was gone only a matter of moments, gone to have a quiet word with the carriage attendant, the provodnitsa.
He closed the door as he re-entered the compartment. “Now we won’t be disturbed,” he said.
Lara, stood there, shocked, frightened, feeling incredibly vulnerable. “What are you going to do?” she asked him in a trembling voice.
“I am going to treat you as your Father should have done.” He sat on the edge of the bunk, his feet on the floor. “Come here Lara… over my lap.”
Lara looked at him incredulously. Surely not….? Surely he wasn’t suggesting….? But she was eighteen… not a child. “I… I don’t understand,” she stammered. “I am going to spank you Lara. Spank you like a little girl.”
“No please…” Lara begged, horrified at the thought. “Please… I’m sorry… you don’t have to punish me.”
“Oh but I do Lara. And I think you know that I do.”
His voice was soft but there was menace in the tone. Suddenly Lara knew that there was no way out, that she would have to submit, to let him do what he wanted to her. She felt tears come to her eyes, and brushed them away with the back of her hand. She stepped to his side and awkwardly bent forward. He guided her across his lap so that she was lying across him her face in the pillow at the end, her legs up on the bunk. She didn’t resist as she felt his hands go to the hem of her long skirt. He lifted her skirt all the way up, bunching it around her waist. The air was suddenly cool on her bare legs at the tops of her stockings. He let her lie there for a moment, but Lara knew he would not leave her like that. Sure enough she felt his fingers go to the waistband of her knickers. She wanted to scream, but knew it would do her no good. The only person who could help her was the provodnitsa and she had, no doubt, been richly rewarded for turning a deaf ear.
Lara felt her knickers come down. He slid them down to her knees then ran his flat hand over the curves of her bare bottom. Lara recoiled from his touch, but there was nowhere to go.
He began to spank her; quite gently at first. The smacks landing rhythmically, building up a beat. Gradually they got harder, more uncomfortable. And then, all of a sudden, very hard indeed. Stinging slaps that made Lara gasp with pain and writhe her hips. Stinging slaps that warmed her bottom and left it smarting and sore. Ten, twenty, thirty times he brought his hand down hard on Lara’s bottom turning it from white, to pink, to a rosy hue of red.
Then he stopped. And where he had just been hurting her now he rubbed. Lara turned her head to look at him, relieved that it was over. It had been painful and humiliating, but bearable nonetheless. He saw her look and gave her that mirthless smile again.
“Don’t imagine that we have finished Lara, that was merely the appetizer for the main course.”
Lara felt her stomach turn over. She looked on as he reached into his jacket and took out an old-fashioned pocket watch. He passed it to her.
“You are going to keep the time Lara Talenski. Each time a minute is reached you are going to say “Please spank me” and I will then give you six hard smacks.”
“And what if I don’t?” Lara said petulantly.
“I don’t think you really want to be responsible for placing your mother in such jeopardy all for the sake of a little defiance do you?”
Lara quickly shook her head.
“Do as you are told then.”
Lara focussed her eyes on the watch face. She looked as the hand ticked slowly round, marking off the seconds. As it reached the twelve she said the required words.
“Please spank me”
She gasped as his hand came down hard on her bare bottom, igniting the pain again. She counted the smacks in her head…one…two…three…four…five…six! Oh it hurt so much! Then his hand was on her bottom again, caressing and rubbing the area he had just chastised. That was a much more pleasant feeling and Lara moaned a little as the soft stroking started to arouse her.
She remembered to look at the watch just in time to see the minute was up. She drew in her breath. “Please spank me,” she said softly He smacked her again. Six more hard slaps, reddening her pretty white cheeks. And then the stroking and the caressing. Lara felt feelings she had never experienced before. Sore and humiliated and yet strangely safe. Her poor bottom on fire, but a deep-seated pleasure starting to burn inside. The hand ticked round to the twelve again.
“Please…. spank me,” she murmured
The response was another six hard smacks. Lara writhed and kicked up her heels, then subsided as the hand caressed and soothed again. She was so sore and yet now, in a moment of pure self-knowledge Lara recognised that not only did she deserve this punishment, she needed and welcomed it. She knew too what her words must be as the hand marked off another minute.
‘Please…spank me… Daddy,’ she said softly. ___________
Imagine a train crossing a snowy Russian landscape. Imagine a girl, her skirt around her waist, her knickers around her knees. Her bottom, very, very red. And still three hours to St. Petersburg.