Check out my stories – I have posted the first chapter of how Wren and Shane ended up at the school. Good times!

Riley breathed deeply, pasted an appropriate expression on her face and walked up to the head table. The dining hall was noisy with dinner chatter, but everyone around the head table fell silent.

She stopped in front of Zach and said, "Excuse me, sir?"

"Yes?" he asked warily.

"Wren and the others are going to the drive in tonight, with Kyle. May I go with?"

Zach exchanged a look with Jacob and said, "No, Riley, you may not. You're not leaving here, not without Jacob or I."

"Go to hell," she muttered under her breath.

"Excuse me?" Zach said softly.

She stared defiantly back. "Go to hell, sir. And fuck yourself while you're there. Sir."

Seth dropped his fork and a ringing silence fell in the entire room, but she didn't back down. She was so tired of this bullshit. She whirled and started back to her table, holding her breath as eyes followed her progress. It was almost a relief when she felt a hand close around her arm. Zach spun her furiously around. Holding a wooden spoon from the salad. She was going to smell like oil and vinegar. She wondered what that would do for Wren. She focused on breathing. The silent eyes followed them to the door.

Riley had hoped they were going to her room, she would have settled for Zach's office. What she didn't expect was to be bent over with her hands braced on the staircase. Her panties came down. Zach wasn't really the chatty type. She held her breath, waiting, then cringed as the first smack echoed mortifyingly through the foyer and doubtless into the dining hall.

"Zach," she pleaded. "Not here. Don't embarrass me like this."

"After you embarrassed me in front of everyone at dinner?"

She could hear the edge of fury in his voice, but even more could feel it burning into her backside as she gasped and squirmed away from the punishing force. Suddenly, the spanking stopped. Riley stood tentatively, rubbing the sting out of her bottom.

"Are we done?" she asked.

"No, we are not done. First we're going to go back in there and you're going to apologize to everyone for that abominable display. Then you're going to apologize to Jacob for the disrespect. Then you are going to go to my office, stand in the corner and wait until I finish my dinner. Then we will discuss the rest of your punishment."

Riley stared at him in horror. He actually meant it. This was insane.

"I can't," she whispered. "Zach, please. Not that."

"You can and you will," he said unsympathetically. "And if you don't start moving, I can paddle your apology out with you bent over the head table."

Riley whimpered and shook her head. "Please..."

"Now!" he barked and grabbed her elbow. She stumbled beside him, tugging her panties back into place before she hit the dining hall. The excited whispers immediately fell off. Riley glanced at her friends – Wren's anguished face, Anna's pity, Shane's exasperated grin. She looked away. The rest of the faces were a blur.

"Riley has something to say to you all," Zach announced. His fingers tightened on her elbow, the silent warning spurring her into speech.

"Yes, um, hi guys. Er, sorry bout that earlier. Must have lost my mind there for a second."

"Obviously!" a voice that sounded suspiciously like Shane yelled.

"Right, well. Carry on."

"Thanks for the dinner entertainment!" Juliet yelled and cheers broke out. Kyle laughed into his drink, but Jacob looked anything but amused. Riley's heart sank at the thought of facing him as Zach led her to the front table.

"Now apologize. Without the smart mouth."

Riley blushed and mumbled, "Sorry, sir."

Zach leaned down and whispered, "Do you remember what I told you? Now stand up straight and apologize properly."

Riley blushed miserably, but obeyed. "I'm sorry I was so disrespectful and interrupted dinner, sir. Oh, and sorry for the rudeness. And swearing, and um..." she glanced back, "Did I forget anything?"

Zach shook his head. "Don't ask me."

Riley looked down and shrugged.

"Don't apologize unless you mean it, Riley," Jacob said. "I'm so ashamed of you. Come apologize when you understand the gravity of what you did."

Riley's eyes filled with tears and when Zach gave her a gentle push in the direction of the door she stumbled blindly off to his office, feeling intensely miserable. She slowly closed the door and stood in the corner she was becoming painfully familiar with. She counted the three scratches in the wood paneling, then pressed her face against the wall and cried. Awhile later she heard the scrape and clatter of girls leaving the dining hall. Eventually footsteps approached and paused outside the office. She could hear Jacob's voice and was torn between wanting him to come in and not wanting to see him ever again. He was ashamed of her. She swallowed hard. She heard a set of footsteps leaving and the door opened, then closed. She knew better than to look around.

Zach walked over to his desk and sat. He contemplated the girl standing silently in the corner. He had always thought Jacob let her get away with far too much, but he was beginning to see why. She made everything such a battle that the littlest victories were worth celebrating. But the fact that she could push and get something led her to push harder and harder, culminating with some event like this evening. What a disaster. He had spoken to Jacob and the Headmaster had told him to do what he saw fit, agreeing that the plan he had from the beginning was probably the best. At any rate, they needed to take desperate measures or they weren't going to get anywhere.

"Riley. Come sit."

Riley shuffled miserably over and sat.

"Things are going to change, Riley."

She nodded.

"Answer me!"

"Yes, sir," she whispered.

"That's the first thing. You will address everyone with respect at all times. You will be unfailingly polite. Jacob agrees that his leniency with you may have led to this."

"No!" Riley exclaimed, then added, "Sorry for interrupting, sir. But it didn't..."

"Nevertheless, you will no longer be so familiar with the Headmaster. Or Kyle for that matter, though he might allow it. I still don't want to hear it. Jacob is explaining this to everyone, so you won't be surprised when you are punished accordingly."

"Yes, sir," she said dully.

"I'm sorry, Riley." She looked up in surprise. "Really, I am. I know you think I don't like you, but that isn't the case. I simply believed, correctly I might add, that you would take all the loose rope Jacob gave you and hang yourself. You could have proved me wrong – but you didn't. I wish you would have, it would have been so much easier on you. Well, it's too late now."

"Couldn't I have another chance?" Riley begged. "I could do it, I swear!"

"Riley. I can't count the number of chances you've been given. I'm sorry. Maybe you could convince Jacob, but you can't convince me. This is for the best."

"This is so not fair!" she cried, standing up. "Fuck you!" She snatched up a coffee cup and threw it, spraying ceramic across the floor. "Fuck! Fuck! Fuck!"

Each scream was punctuated by another flying object. Zach made it across the room in 3 steps and grabbed her wrist, twisting it behind her back.

"I see what Jacob meant about the talking being useless." He pressed her face against the now empty surface of the desk and leaned over to retrieve a long, slender paddle from the top drawer. He jerked her panties down and her skirt up before getting a good grip on the paddle. Riley was still trying fiercely to escape, but Zach held her easily.

"Scream away," he commented, "but I'm reinstating Jacob's old rule. For each swear word or instance of disrespect you'll get 3 strikes, wherever you are. Starting now. So unless you want to be here all night, you'd better shut that mouth, young lady."

Riley snapped her mouth shut. There was a lot she still wanted to say, but Zach meant every word he said, so she wasn't going to test him on this one. She already broke half the shit in his office. This was going to really suck. The paddle snapped down on her already sore bottom and she yelped miserably.

"Tell me about tonight."

"What about it?" Riley snapped, then quickly tacked on a, "Sir."

"You couldn't have possibly expected you'd be allowed to go to the drive in, Riley."

"Why not? Anna and Wren were both going! Seth even said he'd go!" The paddle came down extra hard and she hissed, "Sir."

"I need Seth here, especially on a Friday night. And even if he had gone it would not have mattered. You are going nowhere without Jacob or I, Riley. Nowhere."

She cried out as the paddle blazed against her skin again and again. "It's not fair!" she wailed. "How can you expect me to get better trapped in this place?"

Zach dropped the paddle on the desk with a clatter and taking both of Riley's shoulders, pressed her into a chair. "Riley, listen to me. What is it you wanted? To go to the drive in with your friends. And who do you need to supervise? Jacob or I. Now how was it a smart idea to come up on Friday at dinner and ask to leave in an hour or so? Why couldn't you have asked about next Friday? Or asked to go to rent some movies and watch them here? You have options, Riley. You just always barrel head-first into the unattainable, then take it out on everyone else. And I'll tell you another thing. When you want someone to do you a favor, it's better if you don't tell them to, what was it? Go to hell? And something about fucking myself while I was there?"

"Yes, sir," she mumbled with a reluctant grin.

"Are you going to apologize properly to Jacob tomorrow?"

"Yes, sir."

"Okay, you may go. Straight back to your room, Riley. I'll be up to check on you later. And Riley? I meant it about the backtalk and the swearing. Be respectful, okay?"

"Yes, sir," she responded promptly and escaped before he could change his mind.

"You're an idiot," Shane greeted her. Riley sank down to the hall floor with a sigh before yelping and falling to the side.

"I know," she muttered. "I think I might be certifiably insane." She looked at the other girl. "Aren't you supposed to be at the movies?"

Shane rolled her eyes. "Yes, I am. You need to learn subtlety."

Riley rolled to her feet. "Well, I'm about to."

"Yeah?" Shane trotted after her. "Cool. Hey guys!" she yelled. "Zach's teaching Riley how to be subtle."

"Ouch," Anna commented.

"Thank you!" Riley groaned, falling onto her bed. "At least someone feels bad for me."

"I feel bad," Shane said, "that you're such a slow learner."

"Haha," she muttered. Anna grinned and tugged her roommate out the door as Wren emerged from the shower.

"Want me to put the sheet up?" the redhead offered.

"No, Zach's coming up soon."

"Right." She sat on the edge of the bed. "Want me to kiss it and make it feel better?"

Riley grinned. "Yeah," she said and flopped face-first on the bed.

Wren dug pajamas out for both of them and began to slowly undress her roommate, reaching beneath her to feel for the buttons on her shirt.

Riley sighed as her shirt was peeled away and Wren's bare front pressed against her back. "The door," she reminded Wren half-heartedly.

"I know," Wren said, tugging one of the t-shirts on and helping Riley with the other. She replaced her skirt with pink pants and crawled back up Riley's body to work on her skirt. When she got the skirt off she winced and kissed the red showing outside the other girl's panties. She pulled them down to see and sighed. "Riley. You really are a slow learner."

Riley grinned, tilting her head to the side. "Maybe."

A throat cleared from the doorway and both girls swung around. "Hopefully not too slow a learner," Zach said.

Riley swallowed her retort and jerked her pants on. "We're here, we're behaving. You can go now," Riley muttered, adding, "Sir," at the look on Zach's face.

"Try not to make respect an afterthought, Riley."

"My deepest apologies."

Wren rolled her eyes and smacked Riley before Zach could even move out of the doorway.

Riley yelped, "All right! I give! I'm sorry, sir. Ma'am. Everyone."

Zach hid a grin as Wren muttered, "That's better."

Riley waltzed into English, ignoring the whispers, and called, "Morning, Naomi!" She winced, pausing my desk. "I mean, Ms. Martinez."

"Lord, Riley. If you ever call me that again, I'll have to give you detention."

Wren giggled.

"Seth told me," she said before Riley could protest. "But I am an exception. You have excellent manners in my class and you never have been rude or disrespectful. Call me Naomi. And none of that 'ma'am' business."

"Yes, ma'am!" Riley grinned.

Kyle was leaning against the wall outside the class. "Class go okay?" he asked Naomi as Riley rolled her eyes behind his back.

Naomi laughed. "If you're wondering about Riley, she's an angel."

"Uh-huh." He turned to Riley. "Did Zach check you this morning?"

She snorted. "As if he'd let me out of his sight otherwise, Kyle." She sighed at the look on his face. "I mean of course, sir, he did. Would you like to look, too? Shall I just rip my clothes off here, sir? Or shall we go somewhere more private?"

Naomi grinned and backed away. "I want no part of this."

"I'll trust that you're telling the truth this time," Kyle said. "And you know you don't have to talk to me like that – especially the last part," he added dryly. "But if you pull anything like that again, especially in front anyone else, I will do something about it. There's no way I'm going against Jacob's orders."

"Rightio, sir," Riley grinned.

The halls were empty and Kyle glanced around, then smacked her hard, once. "Less lip. Don't forget. Now get to class."

"Thanks, Kyle," Wren interrupted and grabbed Riley's hand. "We're going." Riley followed quickly. "What the hell was that all about? You never talk to Kyle like that. Kyle's our friend."

"Hmmm..."

"Oh, no," Wren whispered. "You were covering up."

"What? No!" Riley hedged. "Course not."

Wren shoved her roommate into the next bathroom. "Then show me."

"What?"

"Kyle got a message to check you, but you bluffed him. I never saw Zach check you. He was busy with that girl who needed the infirmary. Tell me I'm wrong."

Riley pulled up her sleeves a little. "Look. Clean."

Wren jerked them up higher and sighed at the new cuts up by the girl's elbows. "Riley..."

"What?" She jerked her sleeves back down.

"Don't lie to me," Wren begged, hugging her.

"I just wanted you to be able to deny knowing believably. You suck at lying, you know."

"I know. This is really a problem."

One of the stalls banged open. "You think you've got a problem," Shane groaned. "I've got a problem."

"What's that?" Riley said.

"I need a hiding place – and quick. I'm on the run."

"For what?" Riley asked.

"And from who?" Wren added.

"I got a delivery this morning and someone tipped Kyle off."

"Oh, shit," Riley laughed.

"Everyone will be looking for you now. Especially since you're missing class," Wren pointed out.

"Shit! Class!" Riley groaned. "My first day back." She grabbed Shane and said, "Give me your stuff, quick."

"What?"

"I'll take it and get it smuggled to Juliet or Africa – cause when they find no one checked me, they're going to search me and then search my stuff. But I can at least let them search you and find you clean. I'll go to class and tell Mr. Ramsey you're ill and Wren's with you in the ladies. Good thing we all have ethics together. He'll send Kyle, no doubt. You can play dumb, get searched and get back to the room."

"That's pretty risky for you, Riley."

"Yeah, well, you're going to do me a favor."

"What's that?"

"Taped to the underside of my bed is a knife I stole from the kitchens when I was working in there last week. Get rid of it. And give me some damn weed for free."

"You got it."

The package of contraband changed hands and Riley hurried off to class.

Shane glanced at Wren. "Did you know about the knife?"

"No," she said shortly.

"Hmm... Well it's out of our hands now, anyway."

"Riley, you know you can't win," Wren said into the dark.

"I know."

"So why do you keep fighting, talking back, pushing them?" The chest under her head heaved a sigh.

"I just can't seem to stop."

"Why don't you ask the pro for help."

"Shane?"

"She'd be happy to."

"I'd never hear the end of it."

"Please? For me?"

Riley stroked the silky curls. "For you I'd do anything."

"No more cutting."

"No more."

"You'll come to me or Zach if you feel like it?"

"Or Shane."

"No. Shane doesn't count. She'd let you and you know it. And you'd have the perfect excuse. So, no."

"Okay," Riley said reluctantly. "You or Zach."

"And you'll let Shane teach you how to hold your tongue?"

"But you like my tongue!"

"Yeah, yeah," Wren said, "but only when we're alone."

"Yes, ma'am. I'll leave my tongue in your safekeeping. You may do with it as you please."

"Then come down here and please me."

"Your wish is my command."

Riley leaned out the window, slowly smoking a cigarette. Shane hitched herself up next to her friend and offered a joint.

"Shane, don't be an idiot. They're going to search all my stuff. Hell, for all I know they'll search yours, too."

"Can they do that?" Shane looked worried. "Hell. I'd better get Juliet to hold onto my stuff for now."

"You do that," Riley laughed, clapping Shane on the back.

Wren appeared in the doorway talking to Anna and nearly ran into Shane leaving.

"Hi, bye," she muttered, running for her room.

"Zach's coming," Anna said sympathetically.

Riley nodded and tossed the cigarette, clapping a hand over her mouth when there was an angry screech from below.

Anna laughed, then suggested, "You might want to change and wash your hands. You smell like smoke."

"Riley, is there something you need to tell me?"

She gazed at him, surprised, and debated her options. She thought of confessing – the sick feeling of exposure and began to shake her head. Then she felt a wave of exhaustion and she gripped her hands tightly together, watching as the knuckles turned white.

"Yes," she murmured, sounding dazed.

The other three girls exchanged surprised looks as Riley stepped across the room and took the hand that Zach held out. And finally, began to feel hope.

She settled nervously in the chair while Zach closed the door, then blurted out, "I lied to Kyle today."

"What about?" Zach asked.

"He asked me if I'd been checked and I said you checked me."

Zach sighed and leaned against the desk. "Why did you lie?"

"Because..." She gave an eloquent shrug. "Because."

"Because you had something to hide?"

"Yes."

"And did you hurt yourself last night or after I was unable to check you this morning?"

"Last night," she admitted. "I just got lucky this morning."

"Well, I can guarantee that won't happen again."

She nodded.

"Show me."

She jerked her sleeves back and he was overwhelmed with frustration.

"Riley..."

"I know! I just..."

"Riley, this isn't going to be a miracle. It's work. And you seem to be putting more effort into getting around the rules than you put into using them for what they were meant for."

"I know, sir. It's not like I didn't know I'd be caught."

"Perhaps you wanted to be caught?"

"The thing is, when I don't cut, that's fine. But when I want to and don't, that's something completely different. But no one knows the difference except me. It's impossible."

"Someday, Riley, someday soon, it will be enough that you know the difference. Until then, you simply come and tell me. Perhaps we need a reward system. I think the discomfort it causes you to admit you want to cut will keep you from abusing it. Every time you want to cut yourself, you come find me. If we can keep you from cutting for the next two days we will reinstate a privilege or you may ask for something special – such as going to the drive-in."

She felt a wave of relief. "Thank you, sir."

"Now I think you should go find Kyle and apologize."

"Sir?"

"Since you freely admitted your actions to me, I'm not going to punish you, Riley. But Kyle is the one you lied to – he'll have to make that decision for himself."

She nodded and leapt to her feet. "No problem, sir!" she said, backing out of the room.

Zach laughed softly. She was going to be surprised when Kyle tired of her games and really did punish her. And he thought today might just be that day.

Kyle wasn't in his office. He wasn't in the dining hall, down the back corridor or outside (she had sent Africa to check).

Finally, reluctantly, she tried Jacob's office. She cracked the door until she could see Christian lounging at his desk.

"Hey!" she hissed. "Christian!"

He glanced up and shook his head, beckoning her inside.

She shook her head no. "Where's Kyle?" she mouthed. He tilted his head in confusion and Riley rolled her eyes. "WHERE'S KYLE," she tried again.

The door popped open and the object of her quest stood there, eyebrows raised.

"Need something?"

"Ummm... yeah. I was looking for you."

He ushered her inside. "What can I do for you?"

She glanced uneasily at Jacob's open door. "Can we go somewhere and talk?"

"Here is fine."

"Umm... I lied to you today, I'm sorry," she muttered in a rush.

"What was that?" he asked.

She leaned over. "I lied to you today, I'm apologizing. Jeez."

"You lied to me today?" he repeated. "When?"

Jacob appeared in the doorway and Riley groaned.

"I'm apologizing!"

"For what, exactly," Jacob said.

She sighed and looked down at her hands. "Today after English Kyle came to ask me if I had my arms checked this morning."

Kyle nodded. "Seth asked me to. He wanted to be sure."

She shot a quick glance at him. "I told you Zach checked me this morning, but he didn't. He was taking Emma to the infirmary. I left for class before he got back."

"Oh, Riley," Jacob sighed.

"Why didn't you just let me check, then?" Kyle asked, seizing her wrist.

"Well..."

He jerked her sleeve up and lost it. He slammed his fist into the doorframe next to her and yelled, "Riley, goddammit!"

"I'm sorry! I didn't mean to lie, it just slipped out. It's not like I meant to keep it from Zach forever."

"But you meant to keep it from me."

"I was hoping..." she muttered.

"Riley, just because I am in the school, not the dorms, does not mean you can lie to me whenever it suits you."

"I second that," Jacob said. "Feel free to use my office for this discussion."

"Sir!" Riley protested as Kyle dragged her in that direction. "I was apologizing!"

"Apologizing does not make it as if it never happened!" Kyle said. "You still lied to me and would not even be here if Zach had not made you come! I may allow a more relaxed attitude, Riley, but I am still the assistant-Headmaster here. I am still ranked as highly as Zach! I think you forget that while we are out in the school, but there are no other students here – just you and I. Being casual does not mean disrespectful and it certainly does not mean lying. Do you lie to your friends? Or the other girls?"

"I try not to."

"Then try not to lie to me."

"Kyle, I hardly ever lie to you. I just... had to."

"No, you didn't. You could have told me. You were going to get caught anyway, Riley! Why the hell would you lie to me on top of it!"

"Because you would have been disappointed!" she yelled back. "You would have been ashamed of me."

"I'm disappointed in you now! I trusted you!"

Jacob stood in the doorway with Christian peeking over his shoulder. "There's a ruler on the desk, if you'd like."

Riley turned to him, exasperated. "You're not helping."

"Maybe not you," he said, fighting not to smile.

Riley shrieked when Kyle's hand closed over the back of her neck. He tugged her around and pressed her over the desk.

"Kyle!" she protested. "Wait!"

"Nope." He jerked her jeans down, then her panties, and brought the ruler down. It made a satisfying smack, causing Kyle to grin. "Well, now. Shall we have a civilized discussion?"

"You ass!" she shrieked. Christian rolled his eyes and Kyle smacked her three times in quick succession.

"Civilized, Riley."

"Sorry, sir," she muttered.

"Much better. I could get used to this."

"Kyle, that's not funny."

"It wasn't meant to be. Riley, you must learn to work with people instead of against them. You have so many people bending over backwards to help you, and yet you put all your effort into pissing them off. Doesn't make much sense, does it, darlin?"

"No," she sighed. "But I don't mean to! It just happens."

"Yes, lies just fall out of your mouth. Not your fault."

"Well, I don't mean that. But I am getting better! I came and confessed, right? And apologized! What more do you want?"

"I'd prefer you didn't have anything to confess or apologize for!"

"Good point." She squirmed and whimpered a bit. "I'm really, really sorry. Won't ever happen again!"

"Make sure of it, Riley." Since her bottom was a satisfying shade of red, he relented and allowed her up.

She jerked her pants back up and whimpered. "Damn, Kyle."

"Language, dahlin," he said mildly, ruffling her hair.

She smiled and leaned into him. "I really am sorry. And Zach is going to help me stop, you know..." She waved at her arm and shrugged.

"Good."

Jacob laughed and waved them out of his office. He grabbed Riley's arm as she went past and pulled her to the side.

"Riley, this lying is unacceptable. If I hear about you telling any more lies, I will double the punishment you received."

"Yes, sir," she sighed.