Chapter 8 - A Box Of Chocolates
With a bit of a sigh, I lowered myself back down into that terrible kneeling thing that he was making me do and put my hands carefully on my knees.
“So first, I want you to tell me what naughty things you did.”
I had to have a bit of a think about that. He’d sort of promised that I wouldn’t get one of his really terrible punishments but did I dare to believe him?
And then I managed to work out that, even though Git Features was a sadistic bastard, at least he hadn’t lied to me so far. Maybe I could trust him in that way.
And I mean… basically, it wasn’t as if I had a whole lot of choice, anyway.
So I drew a deep breath and started. “I didn’t learn the words in the way you wanted,” I said carefully, “and I was a bit lazy and didn’t do it as well as I could…” I paused.
“Anything else?” my Master asked firmly. There was something about his voice that sort of let me know that he knew everything anyway.
“And when you left the room, I sort of wanted to tear the sheet up.” I found myself ducking my head down. That was a bit weird because I couldn’t see him anyway but I guess I felt a bit ashamed about it.
“Head up,” he told me firmly.
I sort of snapped my head back up.
“We’ll take them one at a time,” he said. He didn’t sound angry, at least, which was pretty reassuring, I guess, though I still couldn’t really tell with him.
“First, thinking about tearing up the sheet. Whilst it’s not, of itself, naughty, it would have been a singularly bad idea. What do you suppose would have been the consequences of doing so?”
“You would have punished me, Master.” That was an easy one.
“Correct. I would have punished you quite severely. And you would then have been required to learn the rules backwards as well as forwards.”
That sounded like a whole bundle of not much fun!
“Second, not learning the sheet word for word, as I expected. Perhaps I didn’t make myself clear enough when I was telling you what I expected you to do. It would hardly be fair of me to punish you for something that was, at least in part, my fault, would it?”
“No, Master,” I said as this dirty great wave of relief stuff sort of washed through me.
“Third, not doing what I asked as well as possible… being lazy, as you said, and, I might add, surly and ungraceful.”
“As it happens…” He took my nervous hand from my mouth and put it firmly back down on my knee… “as it happens, I already knew that. I am able to observe you when you’re on your own in here.” That caused this little explosion of guilt. Had he been… like… watching me all the time? What else had he seen?
“Give me your hand,” he instructed me.
I did as I was told and he gave me another one of the slap on the wrist things.
“Thank you, Master,” I said without him having to tell me. “Thank you for teaching me not to be lazy and grumpy.” I mean… it was… like… totally warped that he was punishing me like some little kid, like this… but, if it meant that I wasn’t going to get one of his totally sick stress position punishment things, I was almost happy about it!
He followed the slap with a tender kiss on the same spot. “And that was for telling me the truth,” he said.
And, in spite of everything, that kiss felt quite special.
“OK,” he said, breaking my chain of thought, “let’s see how much you do remember, anyway. The title…”
“Rules of behaviour for new girls.” I told him straight away. That bit had sort of stuck in my memory because it had got me wondering about why it was ‘girls’ and not just ‘girl’. Where were all the other ones… and what had he done with them?
“Good, now rule number one.”
“The girl will obey all instructions given to her by her master?” I tried.
“Close,” he told me. “One word missing.”
“Oh yes, ‘Instantly’!”
“Good, Babygirl! And now number two….”
All in all, I was surprised how well I managed. My master gave me a kiss on the top of my head and, as I lowered myself into his stupid kow-tow thing, he told me that I had done quite well, considering that I had not been trying to learn them like that.
And, even though Ro hated me for it, his praise sent this little buzz of pleasure through me.
Half an hour later, the lights flashed and I wasn’t too worried. I’d had a… like… halfway serious go at learning Git Features’s stupid rules - so I knew he wasn’t going to give me too much grief about them. I hurried to put the blindfold back on and then, gritting my teeth, I dropped into his sick kow-tow thing.
He came into the room and generously told me that I could kneel up.
And I pretty much had to strangle Ro to stop her from saying anything and just knelt there… like… totally burning with the whole rage and frustration thing.
I totally hated him.
“I have a little treat for you,” he announced as he sat down in the seat in front of me… and I could hear that he had a bit of a smile thing going on. “There are four Belgian chocolates here in a pretty little box.”
I immediately hated him a bit less. I’m totally cheap like that!
“But there is, of course, a precondition,” he told me.
Why was I not surprised?
I went back to hating him… but probably not quite as much as before!
“Guess what it is,” he added. I could hear him smiling again. He seems to do that a lot.
“I’ve got to show you that I’ve learnt your…” I sort of swallowed the word ‘stupid’ that Ro was trying to kind of push out of my mouth… “your rules before I get them?”
He leaned down and ruffled my hair. I guess he’d noticed that I had had a bit of a struggle to control my mouth and he was sort of letting me know that he was pleased I’d managed it.
“If you get them all right this time, you’ll get all four chocolates. If there are any errors, I get to eat one; half an hour later, guess what…”
“Any errors that time and you’ll eat another one?” I just about managed to control the snark!
“You got it! Off you go then.”
Of course, I made a couple of stupid mistakes! And of course Git Features pretended to be really pleased about this as he made a big fuss about opening the box in front of me and then selecting one of the chocolates. I couldn’t see what he was doing but I was listening very carefully! And then he deliberately… like… wafted the things in front of my nose so I could smell them… and they smelt way beyond delicious!
And then, of course, he made this big show of eating it right in front of me. “Oh absolutely delightful!” he said when he was done. I could have… like… cheerfully strangled him.
I was in a bit of a hurry to get rid of him so I could get those stupid rules learnt so, without being told, I dropped my hands to the ground and started to lower myself into his stupid kow-tow thing.
“Hang on!” he interrupted me. “Head back up! Mouth open!”
I did as I was told, of course, but I wasn’t… like… all that keen. I sort of guessed he was about to stuff something horrible in there as a punishment for not learning his stupid rule things properly. But I knew I didn’t have any choice. If I didn’t do as I was told straight away, he was bound to do something even worse.
But I guess I should have trusted him a bit more… I basically already knew he wasn’t like that.
What I couldn’t see was that he’d bitten off a corner of the chocolate before he’d eaten the rest. He popped that little bit into my mouth and then gave me a kiss on the forehead.
And I… like… froze for a bit… like… basically stunned at how totally delicious that tiny corner was.
I mean… I could tell straight away that this wasn’t one of the… like… cheap selection box type chocolates that I would occasionally get to try at Christmas. The taste started with a slightly bitter chocolatey powder landing on my tongue - cocoa powder, I guess. Then, as it started to melt, the sweet, creamy total deliciousness sort of exploded into my mouth. I tried to chew it slowly to… like… make that wonderful thing last as long as possible but much too soon it was gone.
My master must have been watching me because he leaned forward, took my hand and gave me an unusually tender kiss on the forehead. “You enjoyed that,” he said. It wasn’t a question and I could hear his lovely smile.
“It was…” I began but I wasn’t quite sure what I wanted to say so I sort of trailed off. But he didn’t say anything and kind of allowed the silence to drag on… and so, I guess, I kind of felt I had to think about what I really meant so I could sort of fill the hole.
But he was still holding my hand so I guess the silence thing wasn’t quite as uncomfortable as it might have been.
“I have never, ever tried anything that delicious before in my life,” I told him.
And still he allowed the whole silence thing to stretch out but it wasn’t at all uncomfortable because he was still holding my hand and now he was sort of stroking the back of it gently with his thumb. And then, all of a sudden, I found myself telling him how I’d never really got to try many chocolates before… and certainly not any posh ones like these… and then I heard myself telling him that there was never enough money around at home… and that any spare was basically spent on cheap, Italian, white wine for my mother rather than on chocolates for me.
I mean… I have absolutely no idea why all that stuff started pouring out of me. I’d never told a living soul before and I’d sort of always… like… assumed that I’d go to my grave not telling anybody. It was all way too… like… personal… and too painful.
And suddenly I was up on his knee and being snuggled and somehow the world felt a tiny bit less cruel and I nestled my head into his neck as he rubbed my back. I sort of wanted to cry but managed to bottle it up because, when I’d been quite little, I’d managed to work out that there was no point in letting all that sort of stuff get to me…
I mean… it wasn’t as if it was ever going to do any good.
And besides, if I ever started crying about that sort of stuff, I was never going to stop!
“As long as you’re a good babygirl,” he promised as he kept on snuggling me, “I’ll see what I can do to make up for all those treats you missed out on when you were little.”
That sounded like a really good reason to do the good babygirl thing for him… like… a positive reason, rather than just trying to dodge his stupid punishment things!
He gave me another kiss then popped me back down onto the rug. “Head down!” he told me. “You know what you have to do now to earn those chocolates!”
“Yes, Master, I replied with a bit of a smile. I dropped my forehead down into his kow-tow thing and I just knew that my master was smiling as he left the room.
And, as soon as the door closed behind him, I ripped off the blindfold thing and was… like… totally astonished to see that he had left the box right there on the table.
I knew that I wasn’t allowed to touch the thing - stupid rule number four for you - but there was nothing to stop me from having a very careful look indeed. There were three chocolates left - one so dark it was almost black, one a medium brown and one white - all shiny and delicious looking. They were in this tiny, gold coloured cardboard box with a royal blue ribbon around it… simple but sort of… like… totally perfect.
For a moment, I wondered whether this was some new and more… like… sophisticated type of torture for me but I knew I hadn’t been naughty and I guess I already sort of knew Git Features a bit better than that.
And then I managed to work out that he was telling me that he trusted me… in this tiny way at least. And I guess that was sort of nice… really.
And so, with the chocolates there to encourage me, I set about making sure I knew his stupid rule things perfectly.
It totally sickens me how cheap I am, sometimes!
Ro wasn’t overly impressed about it but I was much too busy thinking about those chocolates to pay any attention to her!