The moment the latch of the door clicked, he spun on his heels. “You do not fraternise with the servants. You do not talk to them beyond giving them your orders. You do not laugh with them. Do you understand me?” he thundered, throwing his hat and gloves on a nearby chair.
Viola shrank, surprised by his outburst, then she rallied, indignant that his abrupt appearance ruined her fun. She straightened her shoulders. “I didn’t fraternise. I engaged in conversation. Am I to walk about this house like a ghost?”
He paced across the floor, halting by his desk. “It is the subject of your chatter that ails me. You know I’m French in lineage. How does it appear to the servants to hear you speak unkindly of my people?”
Voila covered her mouth. She had forgotten Anton’s ancestry. “I merely joked,” she attempted to dilute her mischief, hoping to wipe out the stern expression from his face
Anton tapped the table with his finger. “Joke. Childish banter. Very well, I will see you disciplined in the same vein. Go stand in the corner and lift up your skirts.”
Viola’s feet glued themselves to the carpet beneath her. The hesitation wasn’t intentional—his request stunned her. She didn’t think her behaviour warranted disciplining. She recalled what he had told her in the bedchamber and those words echoed about her head, the determination for her to be obedient. The same attitude her governess had instilled in her as a child. She remembered the dismay when sent to the corner of the nursery of her father’s house and the shameful tears, which had streamed down her cheeks. At least back then, her tender years had warranted such punishments. How would a spell in the corner of his study correct her behaviour when it belittled her, transporting her into a childlike state?
She hadn’t considered how her silliness might garner her husband’s displeasure. An impetuous response to his directive would be to march out of the room. Would he drag her back, admonish her within earshot of the servants. Did Anton have it in him to scandalise their marriage weeks after the wedding?
Awash with contrary emotions, she fisted her hands into tight balls and glared at her husband. He held her gaze, matching her glower with one of his own. Their wills battled against each other, and each second of his unblinking stare left her knees weakened and her eyes blurred with tears, all sparked by her tempestuous revolt. She didn’t want this discord in their relationship. What she craved was his approval. The romantic heart within her had to see past his stiff words to the other man she married, the one who exhibited kindness and made love to her.
The thought of all he was to her triggered her reluctant surrender. Stumbling forward, she shuffled towards a corner, the one farthest from his desk. Once there, she fretted, uncertain, and her arms locked rigidly to her sides, unable to enact his command regarding her skirts.
“Do it,” he said softly.
The humiliation gnawed. What could he possibly gain from seeing her degraded? She stared at her feet, the hem of her dress resting on her bootlaces. It seemed a long way down to where the petticoats lurked beneath. However, with an awkward stiffness, she carried out his instructions, lifting up her skirts and petticoats to reveal her white drawers with their fancy lacework. She clutched her petticoats to her chest. Bared in the bedroom hadn’t caused her grief, but downstairs in his study, the embarrassment grew and she turned away from her husband, not wishing to see his face.
“Lower your drawers,” he hissed.
Good grief! Her pulse quickened and to her mortification, her sex responded as if wired to her husband’s voice. Why oh why, was she filled with lust? The soft hiss of his demanding, but oh so seductive tone added to her dilemma. She wanted to comply, but the dignified woman, whom her virtuous governess had taught shouted inside her head not do to it, not to debase herself for such a trivial act of humour.
“Please, Anton,” she whispered and squashed her legs together. She glanced over her shoulder.
Anton remained by his desk with a pensive expression. He fiddled with a fountain pen, his gaze darting about the table. “If you are ashamed by my request, it is serving a purpose, is it not? When you disgrace yourself with the servants—that is how I feel, inside.” He looked up and held her attention as she swayed between obedience and defiance. “Don’t make me come over there and do it myself.”
While holding the skirts in one hand, she looped the loose cord around her forefinger of the other. She tugged and released the bowtie, however, her hips held the waistband in place. The drawers merely sagged about her thighs. She froze again. To release them, she would have to let go of her skirts or wriggle them down with her hips. Only her stockings covered her skin below the knee. How could she bend without showing him her naked cleft? She hesitated, unable to comply—she was quite convinced something between her legs had begun to flow.
“Very well,” he snapped.
She heard his footsteps approach and the click of his knees as he crouched down. He yanked on the waistband with both hands, pulling down the underwear and exposing her bare bottom. Viola gasped as she felt the rush of cool air over her flesh. Mortification rose up to her mouth, a bitter taste of discomfort at her revealing pose. Her sex, between her legs, seemed to have a mind of its own. While horrified by her predicament, her silly pussy behaved otherwise. Burying her face in her hands, she let out a sob.
He crouched down by Viola’s semi-clad legs, pausing to reflect on his secret passion. Anton’s admiration for the female bottom held no limitations. Once again, fantasies haunted his waking thoughts, concocting a daydream centred on his wife’s charming posterior.
The colouration changes he could instigate if he so desired, the marks he could leave. He pictured the quivering flesh rebounding from his blows, creating those telling features, which were his preference. The pain she would sense, but he would manage and deliver it as he saw appropriate. He’d never be harsh or demonstratively cruel towards to her, he had the skills to determine the right level of humiliation, leaving her with a sore behind, which would help teach her to be less wayward with her witty tongue.
None of it was possible. Her innocence and lack of understanding of his ways would tarnish the trust between them, unlike another, who had eagerly begged him to discipline her with a rod until he had turned her bottom into rows of red stripes. No, he would not rush down that path again and have the consequences of his actions thrown back in his face. Viola would suffer other methods in his efforts to shape a better wife.
The hardest part would be holding back and not fucking her, as yet again she enticed him with her flesh and how he loved her luscious figure. Anton gritted his teeth and concentrated on keeping his hands off her. Rising, he walked backwards and slumped into a chair, not once taking his eyes off her curves, the narrow waist and the delectable firmness of her buttocks.
He breathed heavily, sucking air into his lungs as he traced the outline of the apex of her thighs, using only his vision and imagination. He clenched a fist on his lap, tucking the forefinger into the palm, digging the shallow nail into his skin. That finger would be the one to explore her nether region, poke and probe her and judge her readiness. He would have to keep his distance for the rest of the day, to ensure she recognised her time in the corner was not supposed to be sexual in origin. However, the reality gnawed at him. She looked divine—a picture of temptation.