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The Romance of Spanking, Volume 2

By: Rollin Hand
Published By: DT Publications
Copyright: Copyright 2010, 2011, 2012 by Rollin Hand
5 Stories / 25,381 Words
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This second Romance of Spanking story collection includes five stories (one in two parts) of sizzling romance and hot spankings. At nearly 25,000 words, it is a short story collection guaranteed to warm the heart and fire the imagination.

The stories include Beverly and the Principal, in which a pretty divorcee meets her daughter's school principal over a behavioral problem. When mom finds out that she's being asked to consent to a paddling for her daughter, she wonders if perhaps she shouldn't find out first hand what she's approving.

In The Legend of Sophia the Fair a retired knight recalls his days as the personal confidant and captain of the guard to the Lady Sophia, a brave heroine who saved her kingdom from a predatory noble by performing a courageous act of self sacrifice.

A Pirate's Tale tells the story of a young woman pulled from the sea by a pirate captain who preys upon slave ships. The captain will tolerate the young lady on board his ship as long as she obeys his rules. But good behavior, it seems, is something this lass has to learn the hard way.

In The Central City Discussion Club a writer of spanking erotica is asked by a young woman to facilitate entrance to a unique club so she can retrieve her deceased uncle's will and save her brother's business. But gaining entrance to this club requires that one actually participate in club activities.

The Card Sharp tells the story of a young lady who has set her cap for a young man in her social club. She knows he especially likes two things, Texas Hold 'Em poker and the female derriere. She intends to use both to snag her man.

Beverly & the Principal

The “schoolgirl” stood nervously in front of the desk as the Principal lectured her about her behavior. She wore an abbreviated plaid skirt that ended several inches above the knee, displaying the taut lines of her shapely legs. Her breasts pushed against the tight white blouse in front and her pert bottom jutted out in back. Her hands were behind her back and she shuffled nervously from foot to foot. The principal finished the scolding and slid open a drawer. Inside was a short wooden paddle. It had a legend on it that said “Heat for the Seat”. He pointed to the desk. The schoolgirl reluctantly leaned over, placing her elbows on the desk. The Principal moved to her rear, gripping the little paddle. Placing it under his arm, he used both hands to raise the schoolgirl’s skirt in back. He paused a moment to admire the plump and shapely bottom clad in brief white panties. Tucking the paddle under his arm to free his hands, The Principal placed his thumbs in the elastic of the panties and, ignoring the protests from the “schoolgirl”, drew them down to her knees. The unveiling revealed the lush rounded globes of a most shapely posterior. He patted the lush cheeks then stood to her side and tapped her with the paddle. Then he drew back his arm.

Three months earlier�..

The envelope from the school was thick�too thick to be good news. Beverly decided to go inside and make a cup of coffee before she even dared open it. Now sitting in her breakfast nook she sighed and slit the bulky package. “Damn!” she muttered. Another referral notice telling her that Haley, her sixteen year old daughter was in trouble yet again. This was the fourth one in as many months. This time it was another tardy. She hadn’t bothered to go to her 6th period history class after gym, so she’d been awarded another detention. But there was more. As she sifted through the papers she reflected on the whys of Hailey’s conduct this year.

The divorce had been hard on them all. After years of constant bickering over every little thing she and Rick had called it quits. They were too different---irreconcilable differences. It was a no go. Beverly moved from the sophistication of Dallas to the smaller town of Hot Springs, Arkansas that had job opportunities in her field, which was hospitality. Haley had hated the move. She lost all of her friends, and now had to start all over in a culture very different from the city. And it had led to acting out.� Around the house Haley sulked. She either talked back or was sullen and moody.

It had been a shock to Beverly. Haley had been a straight A student, never a sign of trouble, no boys issues, drugs, or even profanity. She had been a quiet good girl, serious about her studies. And that was in spite of the fact that she was cute as a button and attracted considerable male attention. Now Haley seemed adrift. There was no major trouble yet, but if this reckless behavior of hers wasn’t stopped, there would be. Beverly was no disciplinarian, she’d never had to be. From the looks of things in this packet though, the school was stepping in.

The fact was, Beverly had to admit to herself, she been inadequate to control Haley’s behavior because she was having trouble controlling her own. Chores went undone. The house was a mess. She worked all day, went to her gym, came home and collapsed. Bills were paid late if at all. She realized she’d been hitting the wine bottle heavier and heavier lately. Trying to numb out?

She pulled a sheaf of papers from the envelope. There was a notice calling for a parent conference with Ward McCollum, the principal. That sounded serious. It would be Friday afternoon. Damn, she’d have to take off from work. There was another form, a different color. It was a permission form. It said “Corporal Punishment Consent Form”. Stapled to it was a one page sheet that said “Corporal Punishment Policies and Procedures.” My word, thought Beverly�what was this?

As she read further, the meaning became apparent. Having been given three detentions now for various infractions, Haley was now subject to corporal punishment should a fourth appear. She read the letter from the school signed by Principal McCollum. It said that Haley could be suspended for this last infraction. In lieu of suspension she could submit to corporal punishment. This was to be one of the subjects to be taken up at the conference. Hence, the permission form and the guidelines. Her mouth agape, Bev read on. Punishment was meted out with a paddle. The normal penalty, six swats. The student was to wear slacks or jeans as normal, no extra padding. A witness from the school staff would be present and parents could be present, and in fact were encouraged to be there. Good grief, it had all the grim formality of a hanging.

Bev put the letter down. What should she do? It was her decision as parent. Haley probably wouldn’t mind about the suspension. Maybe she wouldn’t even care. They had never raised a hand to Haley---it hadn’t been necessary. But as things had turned out she was now falling. Where would it end? Bev set her jaw. Maybe a short sharp shock right now would turn things around.

She would think about it. She hadn’t been able to parent very effectively, lost as she was in her own problems and self pity. It was really her fault that it gotten to this point with Haley. Her thoughts were interrupted by the clunk of the door opening and footsteps. It was Haley.

“Do you know what this is?” asked Beverly, thrusting the packet toward her. Haley’s face changed abruptly from bright teenager to chagrinned teenager. She had known intuitively what the packet was---a notice from the school. “We have to meet with Principal McCollum on Friday afternoon. And I’m afraid there is worse news, Haley.”

Haley squirmed, her expression both guilty and apprehensive. “Under the school rules you can be paddled for this.” That got Haley’s attention.

“What? Paddled? You can’t be serious!” Haley was incredulous. She had heard stories here and there, but it was always about someone else.

“I’m afraid so, Haley. It’s a fourth detention. Skipping class. Where were you? You weren’t off school grounds were you?”

Haley’s guilty look told Beverly she’d hit the nail on the head. “You left the school in the middle of the day? To go where?” Bev was angry now.

“It was nothing, mother. Just to the drive in, then right back.” Haley was wheedling now, wringing her hands, which she realized had been caught in the proverbial cookie jar.

“I’m of half a mind to sign this ‘permission to paddle’ form right now, Haley Elizabeth.”

Haley’s expression changed from concern to horror. “Oh, mother, no please don’t. I’d just die.” She put her hands up as if warding off an evil spell.

Bev pursed her lips and shook her head. “I’m going to think about this, Haley, and I’ll decide when we meet with principal McCollum.”

What Beverly was really thinking about was her own culpability. A paddling. What would that feel like? If Haley were to be paddled, I should be paddled too, she mused grimly. It’s almost as much my fault as hers. If I’d been a better wife, and a better mother, maybe this would not have turned out this way. The very idea was oddly intriguing, but she didn’t understand why. Beverly’s experience with any type of physical punishment was limited to a few swats on the backside from an irate mother. In her family scolding and being sent to her room had been the means of discipline.

�The principal, one Ward McCollum, was, in Beverly’s opinion, a pretty good looking male. Beverly had met him at a parent-teacher conference. They had talked for a time and she had been impressed. She had also heard that he was a bachelor. And he seemed very nice. It was hard to envision him as a stern disciplinarian wielding a wooden paddle. Still, she had this thought and she could not let it go. The more she thought about it, the more she became convinced that maybe she needed something like this to get her to wake up. She made up her mind. She would talk to the principal before the meeting.

As things are wont to do, serendipity intervened. In this case at the local food mart. Several days later she was shopping for groceries. There in the checkout line was Ward McCollum. He saw her and smiled. “Mrs. Clawson, how are you?” She felt slightly flustered. He was definitely an attractive man.

Beverly nervously brushed her hair back. Did she look ok? Bev knew she was a good looking woman. At 5’6”, she had auburn hair that fell below her shoulders and a 35-23-36 figure that she kept in good shape at a local gym.

“Oh, Mr. McCollum. I didn’t see you,” she lied. “I’m uh, fine.”

He came forward. “Please, it’s Ward. We’re too small a community here to be formal.”

“Yes, of course, ah, Ward. Please call me Bev.” Good grief, she was fluttering like one of his schoolgirls.

“Let’s see, your daughter is Haley, right? Say would you join me for a cup of coffee? I know you got that letter, and well, I’d like to talk to you about it, informally, if it’s ok.”

Bev thought this was a chance to raise something she’d been mulling over. “Sure. I’ll just check out.”

“There’s a shop on the next corner. I’ll meet you there.”

They got a table in the coffee shop and exchanged pleasantries for a few moments. Then Ward said, “I know what’s on your mind. It’s the letter and our upcoming conference, isn’t it?”

�Bev had been mulling the matter over ever since the letter had arrived, and now she had to ask. “About my daughter Haley, yes. In your letter you said that normally a student would get a paddling for the fourth offense, is that right?”

McCollum sighed and nodded. “Yes. It’s not something we like to do, but sometimes we run out of options and a short, sharp shock is what is called for. Haley, unfortunately, has reached that threshold. I don’t like to recommend corporal punishment, but we do have standards. It’s got to be that or a suspension.”

Beverly shook her head. “I just can’t deal with a suspension, and it would set Haley back too much. So, this paddling, just how many paddle swats is it and what is it like?”

“For this, six. The student bends across the desk. I apply the swats right on the round part of the sit spot. I will tell you it hurts, but they get over it in a day or two.”

Beverly sat there, thinking. “It’s my fault she got in this trouble. I’ve been preoccupied with myself. I’ve let things go with Haley.”

“Look, Mrs�.”

“Please, Mr. McCollum, Ward� it’s Beverly. We never laid a hand on Haley. She’s never even had a spanking. She’s always been very well behaved.”

McCollum said earnestly, “Ok, Beverly, but, look, you can’t beat yourself up. Sometimes kids do things. It’s up to us adults to put them back on the right path�even if it’s sometimes painful, both for us and for them.”

Beverly had told herself she was going to propose this crazy idea. Well, here he was, and here she was. She said, “Yes, yes, I know but�.look, if I ask you something, will you promise not to think I’m a complete kook?”

“Sure. Ask away.”

Bev took a deep breath. “Before I consign Haley to this, ah, punishment, I need to know�”

“You need to know what Beverly?” Ward was perplexed. Where was this headed? She seemed flustered.

Bev looked at him shyly and said, “I need to know what I’d be getting her into. Whether she could handle it, both emotionally and physically. You see, I’m as much to blame and I couldn’t approve this punishment unless I�.”

Ward looked at her with arched eyebrows.

“�unless I experienced it first.” There. She got it out on the table.

Ward sat back. Ran his hand through his hair. “Well, Bev, that is certainly one unusual request.” He was silent for a minute, thinking.

Bev jumped in. “I’ve given it a lot of thought. It’s something I need to do.”

Ward cleared his throat. “It’s six licks with a wooden paddle firmly applied to the seat. Uh, do you maybe have a friend who could�?”

“No,” said Bev, calmly. “I’ve thought about it, and I want you to do it.” She had already decided this. If it was to be real, she wanted the authority figure who would paddle her daughter to paddle her as well.

Ward absorbed this little declaration with a bit of a shock. “I, uh, really Bev, this is, well, highly unusual, wouldn’t you say?”

But Bev was all business now. “I know it is, but I insist. It’s necessary.”

Ward pursed his lips. It hadn’t escaped his attention that Beverly was very attractive and the idea of such a scene with an adult woman, well�
“I’ll tell you what. I hate to go all legal and everything but if you sign�”

She interrupted. “I’ll sign anything you want. I need you to do this so I can decide about Haley. Please.”

Ward finally agreed. It would be a standard school paddling. They would do it after hours on Thursday, then Bev would decide on the permission slip, suspension or paddling, by their meeting the following day.

*************************************************

What do you wear to a paddling, thought Bev? She was nervous, but determined to go through with it, at least for Haley’s sake. That way she could tell herself that she hadn’t put her daughter through anything that she hadn’t experienced too. And there was the nagging guilt---that it was partly her fault. She finally decided on workout tights. She’d be coming back from her gym class anyway, so she might as well meet him in her gym tights. No real need to change.

On Thursday after her workout she checked her appearance. She wore her normal workout gear---black knee length stretch tights and a top. They fitted her hourglass figure like a glove, she decided, looking back over her shoulder into the mirror. The rounded twin globes of her bottom were clearly defined and separated by the tight synthetic fabric. For a top she wore a halter. Well, I guess that will give him a good target, she sighed. Time to go.

The school parking lot was empty when she got there. It was nearly seven o’clock. Only one other car---his. Nervously, she walked in. She could see a light on in the office. She knocked.

“Is that you, Mrs. Clawson, er, Beverly?” asked a voice from within.

“Um, y-yes, it’s me.” Cripes! This was crazy, she was now thinking.

Ward came to the door and motioned her to come in. “Please, come on in. Let’s talk.” Beverly entered and sat down in the chair in front of his desk. It seemed intimidating. She now had a feeling of what a student might feel like called in to account for some bit of bad behavior.

“Well, I see you actually came. I have to ask, are you sure you want to go through with this?”

Beverly shook her head, yes. “I feel as though I must�for two reasons, really. First, I want to know what this will be like for Haley, this paddling. And second, despite what you may think, Haley’s acting out is my fault in a big way. So, yes, let’s get on with it.”

Ward studied her for a moment. “Well, I’m done trying to talk you out of it, and I do understand, and if this is what it takes, then, well---ah, stand up and slip your jacket off.” Ward stood. Sexy and authoritative men made her all fluttery, and Ward was no exception. Beverly rose and took her warm up jacket off, revealing her curvy body clad now in tights and a halter top. Ward did a double take. The lady had curves in all the right places. He turned and moved toward the wall. Beverly hadn’t noticed, but now she did. There was a paddle hanging on the wall by a leather loop. Ward retrieved it.

“Standard two foot maple paddle. Four inches wide, three quarters of an inch thick.” He showed it to her. Beverly gulped. It looked serious. This was going to hurt. She took it in her hands. It felt heavy. She handed it back.
Ward took it.

“Ok, Beverly, what I want you to do is bend forward over the desk right here, supported on your elbows, palms down flat. Feet about a foot apart.” He watched as she bent forward. The posture thrust her shapely posterior outward in an almost indecent pose. Wow, did this lady have a figure or what? Her heart shaped bottom was clearly defined in the tight stretch pants.� He took the paddle and moved to her left, took up a stance and pressed the wood against the jutting rump. She flinched, then settled back down as he gently tapped her bottom with the paddle.

“Now, please stay still, Beverly. Best to look straight ahead.” He rubbed the paddle on her bottom in circles, measuring.

Beverly tried to calm herself. This was it. “I’m ready,” she said.

Ward drew back and brought the paddle forward in a smooth arc. Whack! It landed square across the center of Beverly’s bottom.

“Ah�ohhhh�.my God!” It had stung like fire. A hot brand right across her seat. She’d had no idea!

Whack! The second swat fell. She flinched, partially raising up.
“Ohhh�..whew! That stings.” The burning was quite intense.

“I know it does, Beverly. This is what it’s like. Stay still now, here’s number three.” Ward drew back his arm again and pivoted forward, the blade whooshing through the still air of the office.

Splat! The paddle impacted the shapely rump again making her wriggle involuntarily.

“Yeow!” She had to let out a wail, it stung so bad. Her eyes were tearing up.

Ward noticed how her ass cheeks quivered when the paddle hit. The tights looked painted on, and the twin globes of her luscious bottom were clearly outlined. To steady her Ward put his hand in the small of her back. Then he delivered the fourth smack to her burning bottom. She cried out again and stamped her feet as if that could somehow relieve the awful burning.

“Only two more,” said Ward. “Are you ready? Can you take this?”

Beverly composed herself as best she could. “Yes, I can take it,” she gasped. Her bottom was burning hot, but she felt somewhat at peace, being rightfully punished for her inattention to her daughter’s needs.

Whap! The fifth swat was the most painful yet and Beverly let out a wail and wagged her behind shamelessly. The sight of the paddle bouncing off of the bottom of this mature well formed woman in tights was causing Ward to be seriously aroused. Better finish this, he thought.

Smack! The last swat echoed off the walls.

“Owww!....ohhh, my God!” Beverly raised up on tiptoe. Her behind was blazing like it been branded.

“Ok,” said Ward. “It’s over. You can get up. Please let me help you.”

Bev rose on unsteady legs. Her behind was on fire, her eyes filled with tears. She rubbed her bottom. “Ah�ah�ah�” she gulped.

“Beverly, would you like a tissue?” Ward was now very solicitous.

“Yes, yes.” She took the tissue and wiped her eyes.

“The rest room is just down the hall if you want,” offered Ward.

“I’m ok,” she fluttered. “Just give me a minute.” Her seat was blazing hot and felt swollen. She decided to stop rubbing and even tried to sit down, but thought better of it.

Ward put the paddle back on the hook. “That is the standard school paddling, Beverly. Just like a student would get. Although in your case I think you had less protection. Most kids wear jeans over underwear.” It hadn’t escaped his notice that under the thin spandex there had been no panty line. She’d probably worn a thong.

Beverly blushed at the implication. She found her voice. “I’m ok, and although it hurt a great deal, I’m ok. I don’t regret doing it.”

“Well, I’m glad of that,” said Ward.

Later she felt as if the pain had cleansed her in some way. It faded to a warm glow, but she was sore for a while. Soon other thoughts intruded into her consciousness, sexy thoughts involving a certain handsome principal.

 

********************************************************

 

Friday afternoon came too soon for Haley. She was seated in the office at 3:30 waiting for her mother and looking very apprehensive. Beverly eventually arrived and the school secretary ushered them into the principal’s office. She smiled at Ward McCollum to let him know there were no hard feelings from the previous day. Just checking, she glanced at his left hand. There was no ring. She looked at his desk and credenza, but there were no pictures of a wife or children. Ward McCollum was indeed a bachelor.

“Haley, Mrs. Clawson, please sit.” Ward gestured, then picked up a file. As he leafed through it he frowned. “Haley, this indicates a fourth detention in only three months. We have a serious issue here. Do you have any explanation for your behavior?”

Haley’s response was typical teenager---a shrug, a lame excuse or two and a denial of responsibility. McCollum sighed. “Haley, please wait outside while I speak with your mother.” When she had shut the door behind her, McCollum began. “I know we talked a little yesterday but can you tell me what is going on with her? I notice from her record at her previous school she was an A student with no adverse behavior record. I checked.”

Beverly told him more about Haley’s problems with the divorce and the move. McCollum listened patiently, asking a question or two, but mostly letting her get it all out. Beverly found that she liked talking to this man. He really was kind and sympathetic. McCollum nodded. “I do understand how you feel, Beverly, but if I may say so, Haley has to stop feeling sorry for herself and move on.” Beverly nodded. He was right.

“What I’m going to say now is going to be hard for you to hear, but I think the situation calls for it. Haley has been treated with kid gloves for too long. It’s time the gloves came off and she resumes growing up. That means accepting consequences. Beverly, I’m going to recommend that you sign that corporal punishment form. Since you, ah, know what it’s like, you can make an informed decision now, but my advice is to sign it.”

Beverly’s head snapped up. Oh yeah, she knew now. It had hurt like blazes, but once the initial shock had worn off, it hadn’t been so bad. And for her at least there was something else. The glow in her nether regions had transformed into something sexual. She’d wandered around in an aroused state replaying the incident over and over in her head. While she was woolgathering, Ward had continued.

“I think Haley should be paddled. I really do. It is what happens here when we see this pattern of offenses, and it is the normal consequence. If you don’t, I’ll have to suspend her and that will impact her grades. Because of�yesterday, you, ahem, know what’s involved, so you can assess whether she can take it.”

Of course she could take it. A sharp sting, that’s all it was, and it would put Haley back on the right path. “I think she can,” said Beverly. “If I can take it, so can she. I don’t want her suspended and just left home alone. But Haley has never been spanked or anything. She’s always been a good girl.”

McCollum smiled sympathetically. “And she will be again, but all youngsters have to learn that flouting rules brings penalties and she doesn’t get a pass just because life has been tough lately.”

Beverly had to agree. She signed the form. They called Haley back in. “Haley, your mother and I have decided. You will not be suspended from school. Instead you are going to receive the paddle---six swats. Right here. Right now.”

Haley’s head swung around to look at her mother incredulously. “Mother, you didn’t! How could you?” The color drained out of her face. Principal McCollum sat there impassively.

“I’m sorry, Haley, but you brought this on yourself. A suspension is not possible. I can’t come home to supervise you during the day.” She looked at her daughter earnestly and took her hand, holding it with both of hers. “I’m sorry Haley, but you will just have to take your licks.”

Haley was shocked that it had come to this. She sat there barely breathing as McCollum buzzed his secretary. “Mrs. Frankel, can you come in? We need a witness. Oh, and bring the book.” McCollum stood and rolled up his right sleeve. Mrs. Frankel entered.

“All right Haley, stand up.” Haley stood as if in a daze. “Lean on the desk, on your elbows, palms flat. Look at that circle on the wall.” Indeed Beverly saw there was a piece of paper stuck to the wall with a circle inscribed on it. Haley assumed the position. She was wearing tight jeans and the bent posture thrust her buttocks out, the jeans clearly delineating the rounded globes of her youthful bottom. The wooden paddle was hanging on the wall, right where it had been the day before. McCollum unhooked it and moved to Haley’s rear.

“Haley, it will be six swats. Do not move out of position. If you do we may have to do that one over. Keep perfectly still. Feet a little more apart.” Haley shuffled her feet. “That’s right.” The principal measured the distance, patting Haley’s behind gently with the paddle. He drew back and brought his arm forward in a smooth motion, like he’d done this before.

Crack! the paddle smacked the seat of Haley’s jeans.
“Ow!” Haley’s yelp confirmed how that paddle could burn.

“That’s one,” said McCollum. He drew back again.

Crack! Another swat struck Haley’s bottom.
“Yeow�oh!” Haley shifted her weight from one foot to the other.

McCollum waited a minute then drew back again.
Crack! Haley stood on tiptoe and wailed, “ahhh�.ow!..nng!”

To Beverly it was an intense eye-opening scene. On the one hand she felt for her poor daughter. From the sound of it, it must sting atrociously. Hell, she knew it did. But it didn’t look like he was hitting that hard. He had this medium-slow smooth delivery with a little wrist flick at the end. Then she understood. He didn’t hit hard on purpose. It was just enough to generate a sharp sting, just enough pain so the student would know that there are consequences. From the other side of the desk, Beverly heard sobs. She knew what it felt like. Her own bottom tingled in silent sympathy.

“Three more, Haley.” The principal hefted the paddle, swung his arm in a sideways arc. Crack! It was sharp like a gunshot.

“Ow�ow�.oh�my�” yelped Haley bobbing up and down slightly.

“Steady, now. Only two more, Haley.”

Haley actually said, “Yes, sir,” and bent back down.
Crack! Crack! The last two came rapidly. Haley lifted up on tiptoe and let out a wail.

“All right, you can stand up now.” Beverly breathed again. It was done. Haley stood, vigorously rubbing her bottom. She had tears in her eyes. “Sit down if you want, but you need to sign the book.” Haley stood. Apparently one had to sign for the swats, like it was a receipt or something.

Haley signed and Beverly hugged her daughter. Then she actually shook hands with Mr. McCollum. It was as if something dark had lifted. Not much was said on the way home. Haley went to her room. Beverly came in later and asked if she could rub cold cream on Haley’s bottom. Haley said that would be nice. Her butt was red but not bruised. Haley said the cold cream helped.

Beverly was left alone with her thoughts. She could not get the scene in the principal’s office out of her mind. As the weekend passed Beverly noted that the paddling seemed to have produced a catharsis in Haley. She was less sullen, more her old self. A short sharp shock. It had apparently worked.

*******************************************************

Several days later she was shopping again for groceries. There in the produce aisle, once again, was Ward McCollum. When he saw her, he joked, “We’ve got to stop meeting like this.”

Bev laughed. “Of course, but rather here than in your office.” She almost rubbed her behind, but stopped herself.

Then he had to laugh. She had a point there. Then he became serious. “I have to ask, how is Haley at home? Around school she seems to be doing fine now. I don’t see any of that rebelliousness. I hated to use the paddle, you know, but sometimes that’s what works. Say would you join me for another cup of coffee?”

Bev felt flattered. From his manner she wondered if he was interested in her, as a woman, not just as Haley’s mother.� She hoped so. “Sure. I’ll just check out.”

“Same shop--- on the next corner. I’ll meet you there.”

 

They met again at the coffee shop. Their conversation this time was more cordial. Ward seemed very nice once he was able to put aside his role as The Principal. As she suspected, Ward had no wife. Then, to her absolute surprise Ward asked her out. She then surprised herself and accepted. “I took a chance here,” he said. “After all, our previous meetings have been, ah, not so pleasant.”

“I know,” said Bev, “so it is weird, just a bit. But, I’d better meet you somewhere.” Ward laughed. “I can see the wisdom in that. I’m not sure Haley would welcome me into your house.”

“You know, Ward, she really was ok about it afterward. I thought she’d be resentful and angry, but I think you were right. A short sharp shock is what she needed to turn her around.” Then Bev added, almost as if talking to herself, “I guess I needed it too.”

Ward took that in. “It was very brave, what you did. It’s admirable. And if I may say, you are a very attractive lady.”

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