Lance didn't mention it, didn't like acknowledging it because it was embarrassing. Very embarrassing. I mean, how many guys really wanted to talk about how they still got spankings? How many sixteen-year-olds had to, as punishment, lay over a knee or bend over a table and take a series of hits with a hair brush? It wasn't exactly the kind of thing he wanted to tell anybody. Not his friends at school and certainly not the guys in the group he just now gotten into. No sir.

It wasn't like it happened all the time. It wasn't like it happened every time he left a sock on the floor or didn't get the dishes as clean as his mother would have hoped. It was more like when he swore at his parents, when he would erupt because of being a teenager. When he snuck out of the house to go to a party with no supervision, plenty of cigarettes, alcohol and lots of things that could get a young man in trouble; yeah, that's when he knew he was in for it.

He remembered, smelling like cigarettes on his bed, nervously wringing his hands and thinking of ways to get across the hall to the bathroom, to brush the stench of alcohol off his breath without being caught and maybe getting off a little easier. But that wasn't going to happen soon. The baseboard was known to have a squeak and he knew his parents were downstairs, discussing what had to be done about their disobedient son. They would have seen him. They would have heard.

So instead, he skirmished around for something. Gum, soda, water. It didn't matter. He kept on looking until he saw his face in the mirror, then decided that it was no use. His eyes were red and a dull, slow, stupidity was written across his face as plain as day. Nothing was going to hide the fact that he had been drinking. And besides, he knew that they must have already known.

So he sat back down, and waited. It wasn't long before the conversation downstairs was over, and the scrapping of chairs across cheap linoleum could be heard, followed by the thud of two pairs of heavy footsteps.

He saw Stacy across the hall and knew that she knew better than he about what was going to happen to him. She didn't smile, but she didn't frown either. Her night gown swished around as she leaned in, face pressed into the door jam as he heard their parents starting to climb the stairs. "Good luck," she whispered. She turned her head towards the sound of the incoming doom, then flittered down the hall without a second glance.

Stacy's door clicked shut, and he knew that there was nothing he could do.

There was a cough at his door, and Lance didn't realize that they had gotten there. That they were there. He looked up, remorseful, but knew and was trained to know that looking sad won't get him out of punishment, but it let's them know that it won't take much to finish the lesson. He looked, and his mother was sad, apologetic without having to say sorry, and his father didn't look too happy to be there, and was less happy to know that his son could be as wicked as to sneak out to a party that he had refused to grant permission for.

His mother sat on the bad, folding her legs and telling Lance that, no matter what, he was still their son and that he was loved. There was more to that. There were 'I love you's and 'but's and 'safety' and other things that were thrown in with 'grounded' and 'no car' and 'in by 7'.

After that was over, his mother sighed heavily, and suddenly, the presence of the hair brush that his father held was right there, very hidden but very distinct as it dangled from the strong fingers. He shifted nervously, not able to focus entirely on his mother's words about obeying parents and obeying God and righteous paths. It was so hard to focus when he felt like he was 5 again, when he broke Great-Grandma's Urn, or when he stole that $5 from his father's wallet for a baseball when he was 7. He shifted his hips again into the mattress, his breath stopping short in his chest as his mother saw his uncomfortable state and brushed a hand on his cheek, saying that it had to be done. For his own good.

That's when his father moved forward. It was always their cue to start when Lance became nervous, and when his mother's voice started to waver. His father knew that his mother could only be so strong when it came to such things. He knew that if he weren't there to make her go through with it, that Lance and Stacy would be heathens, absolute terrors.

His mother sighed again and stood up, moving to the end of the bed, sitting down at the edge, letting much of her lap hovering over the carpet and clothes below.

It took a little more work to get Lance up from his spot, which always was so. He stayed as long as possible, until the touch on his shoulder from his father made him raise against his will. He walked, slowly, in tiny steps towards his mother, who sat waiting. She was patient and calm, but he didn't feel it. If he were a little less or more brave, if he didn't feel he deserved it, if his father wasn't blocking the door, he would have run and never looked back.

Finally, he as there, standing in front of his mother, trying to look everywhere but her eyes as he heard his father tell him to take off his shirt, take off his pants.

This, Lance knew, was part of the humiliation. Underneath his clothes, he was a developed young man. Not filled out, kind of thin, but the bulges he had were part of a man now. Things were soft, smooth, and delicate, but he could have sex if he wanted to. He could create children of his own to punish now. He was physically there. Humiliation, Lance knew, was the main key to punishment. He didn't like the idea of having only his underwear on while his father handed his mother the brush. He didn't like that fact that he felt large hands spread over his shoulders as they lead him to stand so he could easily lean over thighs when commanded. His face felt hot, and he knew that his skin must be red enough to glow off the sun. He felt the shame of disobedience, and the shame of having to be tortured.

For his own good.

"Apologize to your mother," his father said, voice gruff, but steady.

"Sorry." His voice felt small, and forced. He was sorry, and he wanted this to be over.

That was enough. There wasn't much that needed to be said. Besides the lecture that his mother gave, there was nothing to talk about. If his mother hadn't been there, his father would have pulled Lance up, shoved him over, yanked whatever would get him to naked flesh and would rain blows until he was satisfied, no matter how Lance protested. That would come later. But now, he focused on the lap before him. He couldn't focus on his own half-nudity. He was going to get spanked. It was going to happen as soon as his father said:

"Lay down."

And Lance did.

His mother palmed the brush for a moment as her son adjusted himself on her lap, stretching out so his hips laid just right, pushed forward until his hands held his upper body up, pushing his feet into the carpet to steady himself. Another sigh came from his mother's mouth, loud in his ear. And then the first crack came out.

He jumped first, winced second. He squirmed his hips again as his mother waited a moment, then landed a slow, steady rhythm onto the seat of his pants.

He grunted, and felt the rocking as he moved along with the smacks. One, two, three, four. Through his boxers, his mother spanked him with a mild stinging of pain. She was never a tough spanker, and didn't prefer to be one. It was the relentlessness that was the torture of her blows. They came with a driving force that told Lance that he should prepare for harsher, more bruising things.

One, two, three, four. His breath came out shallowed as he tried to keep his breathing even, trying not to make noise as the pace began to pick up speed. Lance let out a small whimper, but his mother kept on going, letting the brush fall faster and harder onto his skin. His toes curled into the carpet and his fingers scraped across the floor, but he kept quiet, waiting, waiting for the moment he knew was coming when his father said:

"Stop."

The brush fell to the side, and Lance was pulled up, to face his father, who was pink in the face with anger, but calmly told his wife that she wasn't needed anymore.

Lance felt glad to see his mother go. He wasn't glad that his father had a much stronger palm than his mother could with any brush, and he wasn't glad that his mother wasn't there to put a stop to anything if it was getting too much, but he was glad that he didn't have to suffer this humiliation in front of his mother. It would just be too much to endure this failing manhood with his mother's eyes upon him.

His father, not needing any more words than were necessary, deposited himself in the spot that Lance's mother had occupied only a moment earlier. His mother was gone, and was probably heading down to Stacy's room to talk or to the neighbors, to talk there. Either way, here he was, looking down to face his executioner.

A hand was placed on the small of his back, and Lance went down easily. It felt much the same as it had before. Except that he was half-way there. His rear glowed warmly, and his face mirrored it in embarrassment. His breath was heavy, if not labored.

When a hand unceremoniously yanked down the back of his boxers to his thighs to present a punishable surface, Lance felt a shiver course through his skin and he waited as his father shifted, pressing a hand to Lance's waist, and got ready to bring the real punishment.

The next round of shots echoed sharply into the room. These blows were nothing like his mother had delivered. They didn't build up and they weren't careful in offending the skin. The cry escaped Lance's lips quicker than he meant it to. He tilted forward, accepting the blows, and hated himself as he felt the urge to cry out again rise in his throat. It was too early to start crying.

But he felt it. His father wasn't being gentle and each crack in the room was filling the air with bitterness, anger. The blows rained hard, fast, insanely angry and intense. Combined with the swish and crack of his father's hand were the sounds of his father straining, grunts and curses that were determined to stop Lance's thoughts of ever disobeying again.

His feet lifted from the ground as he swayed his body. The sudden outbursts of noise from his throat were no longer claims of suprised gasps, but became closer together, more pained to let out. He was no longer crying in gasps, he was beginning to sob in feverish breaths. He kicked his feet in terror, though the smacking did not stop, but rather, became more insistent. There was so much that Lance should have known intellectually. That it couldn't be too much longer now, and that really, his father loved him. But he couldn't think. He could barely breath as he felt his skin burn, as the crack-shot hits that seemed to be going on, endlessly punished him in a way that he should have known to avoid.

He twisted his arm, so delirious in his pain that he thought that jerking himself free would release him. No. His father merely pushed his son's body forward, forcing him back to his palms as the brush was picked up again and began the last blows to bright red skin.

The last few hits were blisteringly painful, making Lance scream, making him beg for it to stop. He didn't care anymore. He didn't care about his manhood or pride. All he wanted was for his father to stop. It was enough.

Then it stopped.

His father made him stand, and lean facing the wall. As he turned to obey this last demand, he made eye contact with his father, which was something both of them avoided with a passion. Lance knew that his face was a sorrowful one. Who would want a son who shed so many tears for something that was so deserved, warranted? But the look on his father's face was only half cold. Underneath that stoic exterior was a man who hated having the duty of punishing his only son, but knew that it was important and it was his job to teach as well as he knew how.

There, in that moment, was the understanding that his father had to punish, and that Lance, being a man, even a fresh one, had to accept that the responsibility that was his to take.

So he faced the wall, bearing his rear to the open door, to display his damnation for anyone to see for 15 minutes before the door could be closed and he could cry as much as wanted.

His father left the room, and Lance felt more shame than he could ever remember having.

Later, when his mother left her job to join her son on the road, these punishments did not stop. In fact, they had become more and more frequent now that Lance was around these rotten influences who pressured him to sneak out late and skip curfews. She told him often that he was still under rules, and that she still had enough power to teach him a few things.

With his father not around, his mother had to find men that would help in the discipline, since she still did not have the heart to become more brutal than she was. Luckily, much to Lance's dismay, Lou hired dependable, strong men who understood what 'Confidentiality Agreements' were all about. As soon as the deed was done and Lance was in his respective corner, they would nod, walk away and forget that it ever happened.

What Lance was grateful for, was the fact that his mother never did it in front of the guys, or in the middle of the day. When they came to ask if he wanted to come out, his mother would answer the door and say that he couldn't come out, that he was being punished for whatever reason. Lance would sit on the bed, waiting for the guys to leave and for one of Lou's muscle men to arrive, waiting for the next day when he could barely dance from being so sore, waiting for the crying fit afterwards, where he felt all alone and like a fool. What he was thankful for was the fact that the others didn't know. As far as his mother was concerned, they didn't have to know. Really, it was none of their business how his mother handled her son's affairs.

One of the last ones had been particularly brutal, but well-deserved. Under no circumstances was Lance allowed to pick a fight with his mother and give her a push, to swear harsh like blue lightening, to claim that he hated her and was sick of all her harping about touring and homework and rehearsals. He was a grown man goddammit and he could accomplish these things fine just if she would stay off his ass long enough to let him prove it.

His mother was mad, and started crying, and one of the stagehands who his mother had turned to so many times for the hated job had overheard, taking Lance by the shoulder and didn't wait to hear excuses or to ask for permission and whipped off his belt to make sure that Lance understood that talking to a woman in that manner WAS NOT appropriate. The belt was used to tie Lance to a pole and he was left with his pants around his calves, ready and open for chastisement. The whole ordeal left Lance screaming, crying childishly as every available part of him was punished. His back, his buttocks, his thighs. Everything.

His mother was sorry, of course, that it happened. She cried when she saw it and tried to get the stagehand to stop. In the morning, she promised that she would talk to Lou and tell him to fire that man who took Lance's punishment cruelly and into his own hands.

But Lance was too broken to speak. He stood there, still tied to the pole, clinging feverishly to the cold metal. He sobbed weakly, in pain and in a flurry of emotions that he couldn't contain. His mother traveled around to his front, caressing his tear-streaked, blotched, hiccuping face to soothe him, but he collected himself enough to politely, yet firmly ask for his mother to leave him alone.

She sucked in a breath, sighed and nodded as she reached around to untie Lance from the pole, and then left him there. A mess and a shell of a scared, damaged boy.

Then and there, he promised himself that he would never strike his children.

Around the other guys, he wasn't all that different. He laughed the same, spoke the same, played the same as the rest of them. Outwardly, he was a jokester, who delighted in being silly and being an average teenage boy. There were sugar nights and stupid, harmless pranks that his mother thought were sweet, and innocent. He was, overall, happy. Despite it all.

But he still held the spanking secret close to him, and he never even discussed it with his own mother. Somehow, it was like it didn't even exist, even though it was in the back of his mind, haunting him in many inopportune moments, making him shy and introverted at times when it wasn't needed. He was made fun of at these moments, certainly, but he felt welcomed by these four men just the same.

His worst fear, however, was realized in a moment of carelessness, when Chris was piled onto top of him, and gave Lance a playful, smart smack on the behind.

Lance let out a howler, and struggled with an seemingly unnecessary urgency that toppled Chris off the couch with a curse left muttered from his lips. Lance scrambled from Chris's reach, standing close to the door, panting heavily, and gave a stare of startled, frightened eyes as he pressed his backside along the wall. At that moment, the irrational fear of the open palm laid heavily over Lance's mind.

The look of utter terror was not lost on the older man, who stared in bewilderment as Lance backed slowly towards the door, like a man who was being hunted for the kill. He tried to speak, but the words were lost in his mind. Lance might be a little shy at times, but he had never seen the man like this, like Chris was a serious danger.

When the words did come, they were soft, fearful themselves that he had made an enemy of Lance. "I'm sorry. I didn't mean to hurt you. I didn't-"

Somehow, after much repenting, Lance relaxed, and moved closer. He still moved with caution, but his eyes didn't flash the same fear that was there only moments before.

It wasn't until later, after long moments of Lance blushing, looking shamed, did the secret finally come out. Chris listened with unprecedented patience as Lance slowly explained things that made Chris wince in knowing. Eventually, he explained everything. From the hairbrush, to his bruised manhood, to his father, to his mother, to the stagehand who so brazenly took family law into his own power. Chris had wondered about the man's sudden disappearance, because the man was very good at his job, but was glad that he was gone now that he knew the reasons why.

Lance showed him, reluctantly, the redness of his skin as he inched down the top of his jeans, bearing a sliver of abused skin just along the crack of his buttocks. With a touch, Chris saw how badly Lance felt. A sob was drifting back to the surface and Chris let Lance pull up his pants. He then turned Lance around and pulled him tightly to his body, letting the young man weep against him.

As grateful as Lance was to let the secret come out, he was still ashamed. He preferred not to mention it, and Chris accommodated him. But when his mother was angry and she said that he was in trouble, Chris would look at him in sympathy, and not mention a thing, but would pull Lance close to him and reassure that he would make sure that no one made fun of Lance like they usually did when he couldn't dance the next day. The thought was comforting, but somehow, not enough.

Sometimes, after these spankings, Lance would come to Chris's room to cry and sob. Again, Chris would be patient, and listen carefully as Lance gave every detail, beginning with his offense and ending with his mother, her saying that she wished that Lance could understand, but always, he could not. It took a few of these visits before Chris could convince Lance to let him see the fresh wounds, to rub lotion into the hot skin, to soothe Lance of his fears of being forever under this cycle of corporal punishment.

What Chris said to Lance, for the most part, confused him. The spankings, he said, were a way to correct, yes, but now that they seemed to become greater, and occurred more often, he said things like: control, abuse, anxiety, loss of power. All on the part of Lance's mother. Lance couldn't understand, and really, he didn't want to. Despite the group and management and the crazy schedule, his mother still had control over him. That hadn't changed. He still obeyed the rules his mother laid down, even if he did have to pick Lou's decisions over his mother's most of the time.

Chris sighed, but didn't go on.

One night, though, after the burn of a particularly bad incident, Chris came to Lance's room. The two of them had become closer. Even though they still had fun, they talked also. Chris knew more of Lance, and Lance, in turn, knew more of Chris. There were many things of Chris's past that Lance felt sorry for, and things that really made his spanking secret something of little importance.

But this night, somehow was different. Chris talked a little slower, and tried to explain again how all this spanking could be related to his mother's insecurity over the power of her son. Lance denied it of course, but it somehow became more serious when Chris reached behind himself to pull out a small hairbrush.

It laid on the bed between the two of them, and Lance suddenly became very worried. The hairbrush was a sign of doom, something that pain had taught him a long time ago to fear.

Then Chris started talking. Spanking was control. Spanking was power. Spanking was manipulation of mind, if done often enough. He explained so much, but Lance couldn't understand, couldn't wrap his mind around anything but the brush. It was there, threatening him like his father had. Standing there, letting his mother speak about forgiveness and God and obedience. Lance felt every right to be frightened, to fear this implement of torture that made him fear so passionately.

"I want you to spank me," Chris said, voice forced out in a breathless gasp. Lance shot his head up, eyes widening. "I need you to spank me, Lance."

Lance shook his head, and scooted from the brush, hating how it looked on the mattress. Now it was too much to bear, seeing it ready to serve abuse. Chris could not be saying these words, could not have that determined look in his eyes. Lance would wake up and be ready to have breakfast and laugh and play. This was not happening.

"You need to see what the power is like, Lance," he continued. "It's not normal for someone your age to get spanked at all, much less getting spanked so much." He placed his hands on Lance's face, making the young man face him; a crass punishment in itself. "You might want to try. You might want to. Fuck," Chris swore, harsh under his breath. Through his face, Lance could feel Chris shaking. This man before him was nervous, but determined. Determined to show Lance that there was more to this spanking business than just teaching a lesson. "I talked to your mom, and she won't stop. I tried to tell her to stop, but-"

Lance heard enough. He never wanted Chris to tell his mother how to govern her son. He never wanted Chris to come to his room and ask the unthinkable. "Get out," he growled.

Chris looked shocked, like Lance's reaction was unprecedented. Maybe it was, but then again, Lance didn't care. He wanted the man out.

He didn't try to spank Chris, but he thought about it for a brief second. Instead, he gave him a look of anger, and glowered at him, eventually forcing the man out of the room.

They didn't speak much after that. And he spoke even less to his mother. Now that he was thinking of it, it seemed strange that he was getting spanked so much, so often. Things that he would have gotten away with only a year before were becoming major offenses and soon, he had to talk to her.

It was hard to admit that Chris was right. It was hard to hear his mother saying that she felt like she was losing a son to this madhouse group. There were tears, and promises that meant that Lance could no longer be afraid of an angry hand, would no longer suffer the humiliation of physical pain. They talked. And they talked. And they talked some more. In the end, Lance felt safe, loved, and knew more about his mother than he had before. There were to be no more spankings.

But Lance could still not look at Chris like he could before. He still interacted with him as they did before Chris knew, or before Lance could confront any truths, but it still lingered in his mind what Chris had offered. And it scared him.

Lance told him, of course, what happened. And Chris smiled uncertainty. A victory was served for them and maybe, just maybe, Lance could be a man.

Chris then stood, and asked if Lance was interested in the offer given. It took a moment to realize that Chris was still serious about letting Lance spank him. He said things that scared Lance, even after Lance agreed upon it, because Chris was so insistent. It seemed the only way to end it was to give Chris a spanking. Chris shook, and eyed the brush as much as Lance figured he must have done, but he still looked determined to do it.

"It must be done right," Chris said, then asking what Lance did, asking about how hard, how fierce.

Lance could barely breathe. He remembered the tortuous blows of his father, how hard and bold and determined each stroke was. He shook at the memory, seeing Chris dropping his pants to reveal his underwear. Each man gave a short blush, and Chris kicked off the pants, removing his shirt, and then reaching for the brush, he pushed it into Lance's palm.

Lance gave out a stuttered out a reply, and before he say that he couldn't do it, Chris grabbed his face in his hands and told him to remember every, single, little moment that Chris had irritated him. To conjure up ideas that Chris had done him wrong. To make himself believe that Chris had just deserved a punishingly painful spanking.

Lance closed his eyes, then opened them. But he couldn't imagine Chris as the demon that the older man wanted him to see. Chris looked fearful, despite the protests that he wasn't scared. Somehow, it made him seem young, old, wise, and forgivable, all at the same time.

Chris sighed, then, without warning, pulled Lance's arm behind his back and delivered sharp, painful smacks of a hand on Lance's ass.

The attack was over as soon as it was begun, and Lance was shocked. He wanted to cry, and swear. He knew what Chris was trying to do, and that was to rile him to do it. Suddenly, the anger flashed behind his eyes, the blood pounded in his ears and he knew that it was going to happen and that he wasn't going to be able to control himself. As blood started to boil in his mind, as every moment of wanting the kill Chris came seeping back to him, he knew that all he needed was one, little nudge to push him over the edge, and Chris gave it to him.

Another smack rang through the air, but Chris's hand did not land on Lance's rear, but rather, onto his face, where it left a bright red mark.

Before another breath could be released, Lance tackled Chris and forced him down to the ground, fighting all the way. He hauled Chris to the bed, forcing the man down onto his stomach before pulling the waist up towards himself, yanking down the briefs and feeling the man beneath him squirm and buck to get away.

Lance couldn't remember what it felt like to abuse skin that didn't deserve it. He doesn't remember what it's like to feel the pain in his hand as the brush battered endlessly onto bucking skin, a pleading body. But something in him remembered not being part of himself. Somehow, he liked the control of having this body at his mercy. He liked the aggression and the cries of something that seemed less than human. Legs were flying and words were screeching: "STOP! OW! ENOUGH! LANCE! OW!" He felt power, and control. His arm pivots rapidly, and the cracks in the air are fast and close-between. He felt the pain of them, through his hands and through the brush. Suddenly, it was all he can think of doing, was spanking. Spanking. Spanking.

Then he heard something wet, broken. He paused in mid-air, and feels Chris trembling in his lap. He looked to Chris's hands, which were clutching the sheets and trembling as well. He looked to the clock, and looked to the rear in front of him, which was red and swollen, and he suddenly considered, that in his burst of adrenaline, time seemed infinite, and he doesn't know how long he went. He tossed the brush to the side, and pulls Chris off his lap.

The man seemed sluggish, but happy to be off. His face was coated in tears, a first that Lance has ever seen from Chris. Every part of Chris trembles, and it seemed that Lance was too, and he couldn't stop it. Chris grabbed for him, pulls him into a bruising hug, weeping on Lance's shoulder. Lance joined him in weeping, and the music in the room was the tears, and the understanding of something big, and far beyond themselves.

It's a long moment before Chris realized that he was still naked, and he peels himself away from Lance to get into his clothes.

Lance looked to the bed, and wonders what had just changed. He doesn't want to consider the emotions coursing through his system, and he doesn't want to go back to whatever naïveness he's just been brought out of. But the brush still was on the bed. It has traveled far, and has done much damage in its existence. 'Not anymore,' Lance thinks as he opens the window. The sudden rush of cool, European air washed over him, and he heaves a great sigh before clutching the brush, pivoting his arm one last time and hurling it out into the night sky.

Watching it disappear into the night, he breathed in a long breath of air before closing the window shut again. When he turned, Chris was there, tying a robe around his waist, and his face is decidedly better, though the tracks of his tears are still there.

Lance pulled the man into his arms and starts to cry again. Chris was right. Spanking is power. Spanking is control and the need to manipulate.

And Lance hates it.