Birched on His Birthday

by Davidf (Click for Author's Home Page)<>

James Scott was a typical teenager. He worked as an assembly worker in a Liverpool factory, and lived in a council house with his Mother, 21 year old Brother Colin, and 13 year old Brother Mark. At 17 James loved football, and played for his local team during the season. He hoped that one day, he could turn professional, and perhaps play for the team he had supported all his life, Everton.

Right now, James was midway through a week's holiday in the Isle of Man, a holiday he was spending with three of his team mates, Terry, John and Steve. James was the youngest of the three, but they all agreed James was by far the best player, and with luck, he could go far. James had enjoyed the holiday so far, and was looking forward to his eighteenth birthday the following day, when he could enjoy a few beers in a pub. James had never been an under age drinker. He would have liked a beer, but was aware that if, when he got home, his Mother had smelt alcohol on his breath, he would have been in serious trouble. James would never admit the fact to his mates, but he was scared of his Mother. He loved her, and respected her, and admired the way she had managed to bring up her three sons on her own, since his father had left her nearly six years ago. But James knew full well she would not stand any nonsense from her sons, and she had a very sharp tongue.

"What are you having to drink James?" said Terry.

"Just a Coke, please," replied James.

"Go on, have a pint of beer, you'll enjoy it."

"You know I am not allowed to dring alcohol in a pub until tomorrow," replied James, feeling a little irritated.

"Well," replid Terry, "that's only a few hours away now, go on, have a pint, your mum will never find out!"

That last remark stung James. "Oh, all right then, I'll have a pint of bitter."

"Good man," replied Terry, as he went to the Bar to order the drinks.

James took a mouthful of the beer. At first it tasted strange, but after a while, Paul started to enjoy the taste. In addition, he liked the warm feeling he was getting. Gradually his inhibitions seemed to melt away.

"My round," said John standing up. "Same again for everyone?"

"Yes please," said James without a second thought.

After the second pint James felt very relaxed. He was enjoying himself more than he ever thought possible.

"My round," said Steve standing up. "Same again for everyone?"

"Yes please," said James happily.

"My round," said James, standing up. "Same again for everyone?"

"Just a minute," said Terry, "don't you think you have had enough?"

"Rubbish," replied James, "I have never felt better in my life."

"All right, then," said Terry, "but this had better be your last."

James went to the bar to order the drinks. My now the pub was busy, and James was finding it difficult to get served. Eventually he caught the eye of one of the bar staff, and was about to give his order, when he was roughly pushed aside.

"Three pints of bitter," shouted a voice.

"Hang on," said James, "I was here first, who do you think you are shoving?"

"You mate, and what are you going to do about it?"

"I will smash your face in," said James, sounding much braver than he felt.

"Oh yes? You and who else, have you got a big brother, or would you like your mummy to help you?"

By now James felt his temper rising, and suddenly he lifted up his hand, and pushed the stranger in the chest.

To James's horror, the man staggered back, fell over a chair, and crashed to the floor, bringing a table down with him. Glasses and bottles fell to the floor and smashed, and the customer lay unconscious on the floor, in a pile of broken glass and beer, with blood pouring from his head.

"You've killed him!" shouted a voice.

"No he hasn't," said another customer, kneeling down by the unconscious figure. "But somebody had better call an ambulance!"

"You are staying here," said a man behind James, who James soon realised was the Landlord. "The Police have been called, and they will want a word with you."

The Police soon arrived, bundled James into a Police van, and took him to the Police Station, where he was taken to an interview room.

"Right lad," said the Police Officer, "How old are you?"

"Seventeen, sir," replied James.

"Fighting in a pub, assaulting a customer causing injury, and drinking under age you are in very serious trouble young man!"

"Please, sir, I will be eighteen tomorrow," replid James, feeling the tears starting to well up in his eyes.

"That's as maybe, but you are seventeen now, and that is the point. Do you know the man you assaulted is unconscious in hospital, possibly with a fractured skull? He may have brain damage, and it is all down to you!"

By now James felt sick with fear. What would happen to him?"

"James Scott, you are charged with assault leading to actual bodily harm. I must warn you that you are not obliged to say anything, but anything you do say will be taken down, and may be used in evidence," said the Police Officer sternly. "Have you anything to say?"

"No," replied James miserably. "What is going to happen to me now?

"You will be released on police bail, and will appear before the Magistrate tomorrow," replied the Police Office. "Go back to your hotel, lad, have a good night's sleep, and by the way, have a good birthday!"

Back at the Hotel, James was conferring with his mates. "What should I do? said James.

"Well," replied Terry, "I have been in court myself before, and in my opinion, it is better to plead guilty, but say there were mitigating circumstances. After all James, you didn't start the fight, did you?"

"No," said James, but will the Magistrate take any account of that?

"You can never tell," replied Terry.

"What do you think will happen to me?" asked James.

"Difficult to tell," replied Terry. "You might be let off with a warning, you might be fined, or you could even be birched."

"Birched!" replied James with horror. "Surely they don't birch people now, that went out years ago.".

"Not in the Isle of Man. There was a case a year ago when four Glasgow youths were birched. But don't worry, I am sure it will not come to that."

James spent a restless night. He wished he could get tomorrow over quickly. What a way to spend a birthday!

James was up early the next morning. "Good luck, James," said Terry. "We are coming to the court with you to give you moral support."

James found the court a frightening place. He had never been in a court before. When asked to plead, he pleaded not guilty. Eventually the Magistrate turned to James.

"James Scott, your plea of guilty has been accepted. I am aware of the circumstances surrounding your case, and I know you are not entirely to blame. Nevertheless, I am not prepared to allow people to come over here from the mainland and cause trouble. In view of this, I am sentencing you the a fine of 15, and in addition, you will receive eight strokes of the birch."

James was horified. Before he knew it he started to cry, tears running down his cheeks. "Come on lad," said the Policeman kindly, "it will soon be over."

Back at the police station, James was taken to an interview room. "Do I have to be birched?" said James, trying to choke back sobs."Can't I appeal or something?"

"Yes," repled to Police Officer. "You can appeal, but if you do, you will be required to return to the Isle of Man later, in your own time and at your own expense. If you lose the appeal, you will still be birched. Do you really want that hanging over your head for several weeks? Take my advice, waive your right of appeal, take your punishment, and get it over with. Then you can go back to your pals and have a few drinks tonight."

"All right," said James, "I will do as you suggest. Give me the papers to sign."

"Good lad. Wait there, I will call you when the Doctor is ready to see you."

"Right, strip to your underpants," said to Doctor, "and let me examine you."

James did has he was told, and the Doctor did a number of checks, heart beat, lungs, and the usual order to cough!

"No problems here, you are a strong young man," said the Doctor.

"Wait here a minute," said the Police officer who had been present during the examination. "You will be called in a few moments."

After a short while, the door opened, and another Police Officer looked in and nodded.

"Right James, they are ready for you, come with me."

James was taken down a corridor to a cell. As he was led in, he noticed there was a heavy wooden table in the centre of the room. Five Police Officers were present, along with the Doctor.

"Go and stand at the table, and undo the belt and zip on your jeans," ordered the Sergeant, who appeared to be in charge. James did as he was told.

"Bend him over the table, and pull down his jeans," ordered the Sergeant to the Constables present. "Is he wearing underpants?"

"James felt his shirt tales being pulled up."

"Yes Serge," said the Constable.

"Pull them down," ordered the Sergeant.

James felt his pants being pulled down to his ankles. At the same time, two policemen held his arms, and dragged him down over the table. He felt humiliated and scared. His shirt was pulled up, and he realised his naked buttocks was on full view to everybody watching.

"What would your Mother say now if she could see you?" said the Sergeant. "Would she be proud to see her son with his pants down bending over to receive a birching? It's a pity she is not here to see you! Now are you ready?"

"Yes," whimpered James.

"Right. Constable, you may start."

James waited. After a few seconds, he heard a swish, then felt a searing pain across his naked buttocks. It was far worse than he had expected, and he could not help shouting out. A voice shouted "one." After a short while, another swish, then another line of searing pain across his buttocks. "Two" shouted a voice.

"I can't stand this," thought James as he felt the blood start to trickle down his buttocks. "Surely the Doctor will stop it soon." No such luck. Strokes three, four, five six seven and eight all struck James's exposed buttocks. When it was over, James was sobbing quietly.

"Up you get, lad, it's over now. You took it well. I would not have liked to been through what you have just experienced. Now get dressed, and we will take you to a cell, where you can remain or a while. By the way, happy birthday!"

James was helped to a cell, and laid face down. "When you are ready, press the bell, and somebody will come and fetch you." Said the Police Officer.

After a while, James started feeling better, and decided he was fit enough to leave. He rang the bell, and an Offcer arrived.

"Feeling fit to leave? Good. Follow me, your mates are waiting for you."

"Good to see you James," said Terry. "What was is like?"

"Awful, said James, "much worse than I expected."

"Never mind it's all over now. Let's go for a drink."

"Where?" asked James, "not the place we went to yesterday, surely I will have been banned?"

"Not at all," said Terry. "That fellow you hit was a known trouble maker, and everybody know he had it coming to him. You are a bit of a hero you know!"

"Where ae we going to sit?" asked Steve.

"Sorry lads," said James with a wince of pain, "I will not be sitting down tonight, but the first round is on me. What will it be, the usual?"

James went to the bar to order the drinks. As he waited, he felt a tap on his shoulder. Turning round, he realised to his dismay that the person stood behind him was the fellow he had hit the previous night. Today, however, there was a thick bandage around his head.

"Hi," said the stranger, "my name is Kelly, do you remember me?"

"Of course," said James, "but I thought you were in hospital seriously ill."

"Not at all," replied Kelly. "Things were never that bad. Just a skin wound. It takes more than that to crack my thick skull! Look, James, can I call you James? I am sorry about yesterday. I was out of order, and you had very right to do what you did."

"Apology accepted," said James. "I am sorry for what I did. I never intended to hurt you."

"You know what? you are the first person to stand up to me and I respect you for that. I certainly intend to stay out of trouble in future. I gather you were birched?"

"Yes, that's right!"

"How many strokes did you get?"

"Eight, on my bare buttocks!"

"Bloody hell! Did it hurt?"

"Yes it did, like hell!"

"You are a brave lad. Here, let me buy the drinks. It is the least I can do."

James returned to his mates, who were all standing at a ledge. "Well that was a surprise," said James.

"As I said earlier," replied Terry. "You are a bit of a hero. Is this a case of all's well that ends well?"

"Not quite," said James. "I have got to face my mother when I get back on Saturday. She will kill me."

"Don't be too sure about that," said Terry. "I have already spoken to her on the phone, and explained the position to her. At first she was furious, and said she was going to tell you to pack your bags and leave. However, when I told her the full story, she calmed down. All you have to do is to say you are sorry, and mean it. I think deep down she is rather proud of you, but don't tell her I said so. In fact don't tell her you know I have spoken to her."

"Thanks lads," said James. "You are good pals, and thankyou for everything you have done. I don't know how I can repay you."

"There is something you can do," said Terry as he winked at John and Steve.

"Anything," said James. "Just say the word."

"Well," said Terry. "When we get back to the hotel, will you pull down your pants and let us see the marks on your bottom?"

"Sure thing," said James. "I was going to do that anyway!"

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