Leader of the Pack

I’ve always been a Tomboy. Still am to be honest but for an adult there are socially acceptable ways to act it out, amateur sports or backpacking into the wilderness. For a gangling 17-year-old girl in the late 1950s in provincial Canada there was none of that. You stayed home and developed a rich fantasy life with your rag-dolls (Barbie came later).

Call it a throw-back to rebel-blood (My family came from South Carolina) I’d always figured the rules were for the other person. I hung out with gangs of boys 3-4 years younger than myself (and a couple of years matter at that age) from the wrong part of town and by the standards of the time ran wild. Pretty tame stuff compared with what goes down in Harlem nowadays. We didn’t pack Uzi’s and we didn’t do dope. We didn’t even steal except maybe fruit from the market. What did we do? Had a hell of a lot of fun. Mocking respectable folk and general trespassing. And a little mild vandalism but that is to get ahead of my story.

Nowadays, we’d have a social worker apiece. Then, we were examples to be thundered at from the pulpit. Brats to be made to toe the line. That was the theory anyway. In practise it was always the other gangs that copped it; that got rounded up by the police. We seemed to have charmed lives. We took our diplomatic immunity for granted, of course. Except for the once which is this story, the one time we faced the consequences of our actions by the standards of the time.

It was the late fall; the time of the first serious snow of the year. We played nice for a day or two, tobogganing and snow-fights. It was my idea, although seriously I didn’t mean any harm. I was thoughtless, but who isn’t at that age?

It happened at Junction 57, a traffic bottleneck and a real screw-up in town planning. It was fixed finally in 1963 by pulling down Old Sanderson’s Petrol Station. Anyway, as it was, the traffic had to slow down to a crawl and jack-knife through a one hundred degree bend. It gave us a stationary target. We positioned ourselves across the way where a snowbank gave us plentiful snow to use as ammunition. As the cars ground their way through the contraction, we struck with shock and awe by pelting their windscreens with lots of snowballs. It was instant white-out. Traffic ground to a halt with people exiting their vehicles and waving their fists in the air, and then cursing as they scraped their windshields clear with much snow going up their shirtsleeves.

We had convulsions of laughter which was as subtle as a pie in your face, but in those days you made your own fun. Kids of our age didn’t tire of a joke that soon, so we ambushed maybe eight cars. By then the snow supply was beginning to be exhausted. I was about to shout, “Let’s call it a day,” when a car appeared that would have been a sin to let go. It was an army car, not one of the grubby jeeps we saw around town but an officer’s car, sleek and gleaming. Under my direction we used our boots and sticks to smash up a patch of ice. Bad mistake. Through the air flew about 30 pounds of black ice. That might have done the job in itself, but the clincher was the three or four stones embedded in the snowballs that we hadn’t noticed. This was before toughened windscreens. Crunch. The whole windscreen shattered, almost atomised.

If we’d taken to our heels we MIGHT have got away with it. No, probably not. But we’d have had a chance. No, we just stood there pole-axed, excited and shocked.

Gleaming doors shot open and three men in dungarees jumped out, led by a red-headed lieutenant. We scarpered. We knew the city, every back street, but we were amateurs facing professionals. It was glorious fun while it lasted. Dashing down side streets, hair-breath escapes, but it ended predictably; twelve out of sixteen of us corralled into a backyard behind an abandoned Chinese restaurant.

Spank parade hadn’t been drilled into these men, but they showed initiative. One guy kept us from scarpering while the other two worked their way through the boys, bare asses shining in the moon that had just come out, yelps and gasps making the rats run for cover. The Lieutenant just stood back and watched while I tried to look as though I’d just wandered out here in a late night jaunt.

It didn’t take fifteen minutes of pretty thorough spankmanship, boys clustered one side of the yard hauling up pants, rubbing and sniping, while I tried my best butter-wouldn’t-melt smile on the lieutenant.

"Well, young man," he said, stripping off his belt. “Leadership comes with a price. Are you prepared to pay it?"

I gave him a ‘couldn’t care less’ look. A few of the guys were together enough to stand and gape. The lieutenant inspected my street-urchin looks intensely in the moonlight, then pulled off my baseball cap revealing my girlie curls. That stopped him dead, like he was brought up to be kind to young ladies and dumb animals. I was having none of that. I didn't want to be spanked, but my reputation was on the line.

I fixed him with my most insolent grin, I oozed attitude and drawled: "Frightened I might be too much for you to handle, big man?”

He flushed and ground out: “Since your mother ain’t here, I guess it falls to me to teach you some respect.”

I felt weak at the knees. I guess I really believed I was going to get spanked. I could tell he was nervous. Did that make things better? I couldn't see how. I needed all my sympathy for my poor bottom.

Keeping the initiative, I lowered my jeans and yanked down my panties. It gave me a cheap thrill to parade bare-ass before an audience, but mostly I was scared. Snowflakes bit my bare butt; it was that cold.

He threw away his belt and sat on an old beer barrel, then gestured to me. I went over his lap in a flummox of arms and legs, and landed awkwardly on his knees so my glasses were knocked sideways. I scowled, then straightened them and wiggled myself into a more stable posture.

The first spank landed upper right quadrant and bit with an electric sting. I lay there with a look that said: ‘This is being spanked? I can handle this.' Peppered slaps brought a warm aching to the whole of my buttocks.

‘This is nothing I can't handle,’ I thought. I gritted my teeth and thought beautiful thoughts while I waited for my humiliation to end. Have you ever played the dumb game where you have to sit on a metal central heating unit and the first one to jump off is a wimp? My poor bottom began to feel like I'd got into a game with tougher kids than me.

Then suddenly it was over. I was kneeling in the snow taking great shuddering breaths and fighting an urge to babble a song of contrition. My backside felt as though I'd been skinned and dipped in boiling water, but a minute or two later that faded into an inflamed bruised feeling.

“Brave little thing,” I heard him murmur to his sergeant as the troop shrugged on their jackets and trudged off back to their car.

I waited until his back was turned and gave him the finger, staring daggers at his retreating back, but it doesn't really work when you’re standing there with a pink bottom growing goosebumps in the chill air with your jeans and panties crumpled around your calves.

We watched out for the next month or two, for sure, and scattered when we saw someone with an army uniform. But, no way did it reform us. It was a matter for boastful tales for those who weren't there and impractical ideas of revenge. My reputation had survived and a couple of the cuter guys thought I'd been cool. We went on as before, only that bit more careful. We knew we weren't invulnerable any longer.

The End

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