Sunday, 11 September 2016

Sunday, September 11, 2016 -

Military Strictness

by Steve Rayer
Published: Aug 29, 2016
Words: 30,010
Category: domestic discipline, romance
Orientation: M/F
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Chapter 1

Anika was sulking, sitting alone and sulking. All around were people talking, laughing, enjoying drinks served on the lawn and yet the garden chair next to her was unoccupied, the only one in that gathering not taken, emphasising, mocking her isolation. Apart from her hosts, Penny and her husband, Alistair, the army major, she had never before set eyes on anyone there and she was much too shy to stand up and try to join a group in conversation. Penny had done her best to make her feel welcome, but it seemed everyone knew everyone else and Anika was not the type to chat easily to strangers. So, spotting two chairs on the edge of the crowd suddenly become vacant, she had wandered over trying not to hurry and gratefully sank into one of them. Another half hour of this and she would be able to make her polite excuses and leave without any affecting rudeness.

She knew what the problem was, or thought she did. She was too pretty and her light copper-coloured skin in all that white predominance did rather set her apart. What man under the watchful gaze of that respectable group would want to be caught out chatting up a pretty Indian girl? And the ladies? Don't even think about it! They weren't being deliberately unkind but with true English reserve simply didn't know how to handle her, what to talk about, fearful of saying the wrong thing... or so she thought. The idea that no one might want to approach this sulky creature never crossed her mind.

The newspapers recently had been full of a new trend they'd picked up, something they had dubbed 'The Swinging Sixties'. Oh yeah, she mused, fat chance they have of swinging for me!

However, sitting all alone gave her time to think over the little scene she had accidentally stumbled upon.

Penny, Irish to the soles of her feet, was a physiotherapist at the general hospital where Anika worked as a staff nurse. They were both second generation immigrants, a coincidence which had drawn them together from the start even though their financial circumstances were so different. What a contrast was Penny's comfortable home to the tiny house in a mean side street, which Anika and her mother shared! When occasion demanded, Anika would baby-sit for Penny's two small children, leaving her own little boy, Thomas, in the care of her mother. If nothing else, it helped to supplement a nurse's meagre salary.

And how fascinated she was by the loving tactile relationship between Penny and Alistair, so different from her own experience. More than once she had seen Alistair deliver a playful sharp smack to his wife's backside and Penny would jump with an 'ooh' exclamation and then laugh and kiss him. Sometimes that smack could be altogether more serious when needed. Penny had a natural sharp temper, prone to display far too often and Anika was secretly amused at the resounding wallop her friend would receive, followed by the command, "Stop that, behave yourself!"