Blistering the Acolyte
The Sixth Somerset Adventure
By Susan Waterflower Bell
The social season of the protestant population of Somerset, had always been modeled around the Anglican Liturgical Calendar or ALC for short. It had been this practice that lead to a number of major social events being hosted in the spring, most taking place after Easter Sunday. The period leading up to Easter 'Lent' was one used to prepare, plan and plot.
It was also a season that those being prepared to be Confirmed in the church where schooled and lectured in the practices, traditions and believes of the Anglican church. This was also a period a parish would train new acolytes and offer refreshing courses for those seasoned ones.
Acolyte training was conducted in seventeen one hour sessions that spanned the course of a three week period, at the end of three week period, each student would be expected to be well versed in there craft, and a feeling of humility and reverence was to be expected when they serve at the alter.
Holly, a young women around the age of thirty five, took a deep breath as she lead Sunflower down the hallway. A look of grave concerned colored the middle age women face as she quickened her step. Following close behind Holly was Sunflower, her face seemed to drained of color and a look of pure dread and fear seemed to be sketched upon her round oval face.
"I expected something like this from one of the boys, not one of my girls." Holly said in a scolding tone of voice as she quicken her strived. There was a clear undercurrent of disappointment in her voice as well.
"Come on now, it was just a little prank?" Sunflower said taking a deep breath as she picked up her feet and tried to quicken her pass. The young girl knew she was in trouble, she could tell by the scolding tone of voice she was being addressed in. The women's worlds also had a odd effect on her, something about her words caused her heart to shiver as if pierced by a dozen or so ice crystals.
"Putting a.. one of those blasted cushions.. On Fathers chair.. My god girl, and you aspire to be a Crucifer or Thurible.. I tell you, your not going to get promoted pulling pranks like that. And Holy Week, is only a fortnight away too." Grumbled Holly as paused and peered toward the little fountain that was located in the center of the stone paved courtyard they where strolling across.
"It was a bloody harmless prank!" Groaned Sunflower as she folded her hands across her chest and just under her developing breast. "I mean heaven forbid, somebody does something to lighten the air around here, everybody is so somber and downcast." She quickly added as she rolled her eyes as she kicked at a lose cobblestone.
"And that attitude of yours.. We need to do something about that, its not becoming of a young acolyte to go about with a chip on there shoulder. Seems your so very full of sass that you need more than a gentle reminder." Holly said taking a deep breath as she reached over and took the young girl firmly by the arm.
"My attitude is fine!" Barked Sunflower, 'lector' if you call it that, that Holly had just delivered had put her switched her being in a pure defense mode, to a more of offensive frame of mind. One that caused her temper to boil, and caused her to loosen the locked placed on her tongue.
"SUNFLOWER ELIZABETH BEAUVILLIERS!" Answered Holly in a loud ringing tone of voice that echoed across the cobblestones. "You will not raise your tone of voice with me, nor will you play any more pranks, do you understand me young lady?!" She bellowed, as more of a show of force and to foreshadow the maelstrom about to rain down upon her head. "DO I MAKE MY SELF CLEAR!"
And before Sunflower could answer, Holly had reached down and taken the young girl by the hand had started to pull her across the cobblestone paved courtyard and up the concreted steps that lead to the building that housed the Rectors Office. Without a word she pulled the girl through the door and into a small side room. A wooden hanging in the center of the door informed those entering the room was reserved for 'Mistress of the Acolytes'.
The room Sunflower found herself standing in now was a perfectly square one, a very well worn desk, one that might have come from the old school house that sat right across the road. Even a stamp bearing the crest of the old 'Main Street School' could be seen from the doorway where she stood.
Behind the desk, there stood a old double door wardrobe, one that was suppose to hold more than clock or a nightdress. No, held within its bellies where suppose to a collection of rattan canes so fine, it would make a old Oxford professor turn green with envy. A few paddles, a strap and a slipper. The two bottom drawers where suppose to hold special punishment outfits for those who.. Had.. Crossed the line.
"Now Sunflower." Holly said taking a deep breath as she guided the girl into her office. "Something must be going on with ya," She said gently closing the door behind her, once Sunflower had made her way into the confines of the small little room.
Sunflower blinked and blinked again as she peered down at the polished wooden floorboards. Shifting her weight from one foot to the other she started to play with the helm of her ivy white dress she was wearing.
"Its nothing really.." She said falling over her own words. In all honesty, Sunflower had been catching a lot of flake from her mother a lot of minor things. Paired with the contest pressure to perform in the classroom, paired with the building pressure coming social season, the new found pressures of being elected as 'Patrol Leader' of her troop only seemed to heighten the pressure bearing down upon her shoulders.
"Really now," Said Holly peering toward Sunflower. "Something must be bothering you, I mean a girl does not go from being a perfect child, to a ill mannered brat in the span of a fortnight. Unless something major is going on behind the scenes."
"I SAID IT WAS NOTHING!" Sunflower bellowed as she folded her hands across her chest and stomped her foot down upon the wooden floorboards of the room. Despite her protest, a deep red ugly red blush was coloring her high cheekbones. A sure sign something was amidst deep within her heart.
Holly took a deep breath and forced herself not to roll her eyes at young students antics. Quickly she shook her head and advanced toward the wardrobe, quickly she pulled upon the wooden doors. Quickly she reached into the confines of the space and after a half minute she pulled out a very fearsome looking paddle.
The paddle was around the same size as the ones used at school, only this one seemed to have small holes the size of nail heads drilled into the surface of the paddle. Without a word being spoken, Holly placed the paddle down upon the surface of the desk. Then taking a deep breath, Holly hoisted herself up and took a seat at the edge of the desk, quickly she folded her hand across her chest as the motioned with her eyes for Sunflower to take the chair in front of her.
Sunflower blinked and blinked again as she took the offered chair, once her bottom was firmly seated she eased into the back and released a deep sigh. Quickly she folded her hands in her lap and crossed her legs. It seemed to those 'Social Lesson's' her mother had sighed her up for where starting to pay off.
"Now I'm going to be frank with you." Holly said peering toward Sunflower. "I'm really not pleased with the way you've been acting recently, at first it was small things like passing notes during Confirmation Lessons, then it was sneaking off to the old train station, now its playing pranks." She said starting her lector by naming off the minor misdeeds that had been brought to her attention. "And lets not forget about sneaking down to Hemlock Lane." She quickly added.
"Okay…" Sunflower shifted her weight from one bottom cheek to the other as the list of infractions where named off one by one. "And your point?" Sunflower said casting her eyes to the side as she refused to look Holly right in the eyes.
"My point is this, your starting down a slippery slope. I understand that a young women is going to press the boundaries, but remember you're a member of the founding families. Your fathers on the Vestry Board, and your mothers head of the Alter Guild." Holly said trying to lead the lector into the direction she wished to take it.
Sunflower could only nod her head, as Holly's words went into one ear and out of the other.
"Listen Sunflower." Holly said taking a deep breath as she peered toward Sunflower, she could tell her lector was entering into one ear and leaving the other as soon as she could speak.
"I can tell you kind of got a lot on your plate. With your schoolwork, and badge work and that little supernatural research thing you and your friend Rachel are doing. And training to be a Acolyte might kind of seem kind of silly." Holly said
"Indeed I do.." Sunflower said being equally frank with Holly. Despite knowing the reason she and her peers where undergoing this training, she was still having trouble of seeing the value it would have in the long run. Doing school work would help her get good marks, her mother and father offered a small cash bounty for good marks. Thus she could see the value in doing homework and studying for test.
Badge work, would result in her earning a new badge in the guides, each earned badge would move her one step further toward her final goal of earning a silver badge. But becoming acolyte would not advance in any causes.
"Okay, since your only two sessions away from gradation, I'll allow you to competed the course. But.. I'll like you to talk with the Father about this. I'm only here to pass physical judgment upon you. The Father will decided when you and how you can serve." Holly said jumping down from the desk and going to pick up the paddle.
Once the paddle was in her hand, she slide off the desk and motioned for Sunflower to stand up.
Taking a deep breath, Sunflower lifted her bottom from the seat of her chair, quite quickly she pushed the chair back and taking a deep breath she placed her hands down upon the surface of the wooden desk.
"Also, I'm going to suggest you talk to the father about this little outburst." She said picking up the paddle, once the paddle was in her hand, she walked over to Sunflower and picked up her skirt. Carefully she folded the skirt back, being sure carefully tuck the helm of the skirt into the elastic waistline.
Quickly, Sunflowers white panties where rolled and her flour white bottom to cool air of the room. Holly wasted no time in bringing the paddle to bear upon the young girls bottom. A half of dozen smacks fell in quick succession, sending a blinding shockwave of sting, followed by a wave of burn into her bottom.
"I will not tolerate, any sigh of disrespected from you or anybody else young lady!" Holly scolded as she smacked the young bottom, causing the flat surface of the paddle swing into her bottom with such force that the popping sound it made when it came into contact with her bottom filled the whole space of the office.
"Yes ma'am!" Sunflower squeaked as her bottom was lit ablaze by the force of the paddle, and the toe curling force of the sting traveling behind it. Quickly the young girl sucked in deep breath and waited for the next volley to fall upon her quickly pinkie backside.
"Good, very good." Holly said easing up on her swing. "Now, I think you've had enough. Take a deep breath, go wash your face and fix your clothing." Holly further instructed as she placed the paddle down upon the desk.
"Yes ma'am." Sunflower said, taking a deep breath as she forced herself to stand up. Quickly she started to fix her clothing. Pulling up her panties and trying to smooth out her skirt.
"Very good, you are now dismissed." Holly said peering toward Sunflower as she strolled toward the heavy wooden door of the office. Once she reached the door, she pulled the door open and directed Sunflower out.
Nodding her head softy, Sunflower left the office. And oddly enough she found her head filled to the brim with thoughts as she made her way home down the well worn cobblestone paved sidewalk.
Over view of Somerset History
(Founding to the Battle of Johnston's Landing)