I was fortunate, growing up, to have a large contingent of extended family living in the same neighborhood. My mom’s sister lived just a couple of blocks from us in a house on a large lot on a cul de sac that backed up to woods. They also had an in-ground pool, something that made their place a fun place to hang, especially during summers. There were six kids living there at the time this story took place; my aunt and uncle’s five kids and a niece of my uncle, whom they had taken in at a young age (long story) and had since adopted.

I was especially close with this girl, whose name was Judith, or Judi for short. We were just a few months apart in age (she was a bit older) and we hung together both in school and during the summer, mainly at her house.

Like my mom, my aunt was a first-response spanker. Though she tended to let more things slide than my mom did (probably because of the sheer number of kids there), spankings were not rare and, unlike my house, were always done in the open in front of whatever family happened to be there. With the exception of the youngest boy, I’d seen each of my cousins, three boys and two girls, on the receiving end at least once, bent over getting the paddle applied to their bare bottoms. My aunt also believed in ‘while you are a guest here, I expect you to follow the rules’ and I had found myself in that bent over position  a handful of times when I stayed there over the years.

The last, and worst, spanking I got from my aunt took place the summer between 8th and 9th grades, close to my 14th birthday. I was staying there for a couple days around July 4th. Judi and I had hatched a scheme to ride our bikes to the marina not far from their house. This marina was strictly off limits to us, a rule of both of our parents. Our folks knew the marina was a popular drinking hangout for high school kids and that a number of older guys frequented it, looking to hit on the girls. It was also located off a busy highway that was not pedestrian or bike friendly.

On this particular day, we told my aunt we were going to ride our bikes over to the custard stand, then head over to the large neighborhood park around the corner. My aunt said OK, but to make sure we were back by 3:30. We readily agreed and off we went, riding directly past the custard stand and straight toward the busy divided highway that led to the access road for the marina.

We had crossed two lanes of traffic and were standing with our bikes on the median when all of the sudden Judi let out a: “Crap!”

About 100 yards down the road in the opposite direction was her dad, in his truck headed to work. He did a slow crawl past us, just to confirm it was who he thought it was. He looped around at the next intersection and pulled up to us while we were still on the median.

“Get in.” That was all he said. He exited the truck and put our bikes in the open bed. He said nothing on the short drive back. When we reached the driveway, he just pointed to the house and said: “Inside.”

We scuffled hang dog into the kitchen via the back door, my uncle right behind us. My aunt was in the kitchen and looked up, first at us, then at my uncle, who quickly briefed her on where he had found us before heading back to work.

My aunt stood in front of us, glowering and arms folded. She was not a yeller and, in fact, unlike my mom, not prone to lecture much at all.

“You two are in big trouble,” she said. She pointed at Judi. “Go get The Stick.”

I could see a wave of panic cross Judi’s face. The Stick, it should be explained, was a mini-blind wand, maybe 18 inches long and coated in vinyl. In that house, it was the ‘nuclear’ option and reserved for the most serious offenses. I had seen it used on a couple of my cousins but I had never experienced it. Now I was going to find out why its announcement had filled Judi with so much anxiety.

A certainty of a spanking in that house was that it was guaranteed to draw a crowd. As if by magic, our impending distress drew the rest of the kids into the adjacent family room from outside and every other part of the house. First were the oldest of my aunt and uncle’s biological kids, the twins Jackson and Jordan, both around 14 at the time. Jordan, in particular, seemed to delight in seeing his siblings in trouble, especially the girls, and always had this smarmy look on his face while he leered at you. My cousin, Julia, 12, was next in, followed by Jason, who was around 11. I am not sure if the youngest, Jeremy, came in at some point, but it was the four other sibs who were in the family room when Judi returned from retrieving the stick from the back hall closet.

My aunt pulled a chair from the kitchen table and turned it so the back faced away from us. She wheeled around and pointed in our direction with the stick. “Get those down,” she said.

Just as at my house, every spanking there was given on a bare bottom. I was extraordinarily nervous, both at the prospect of a spanking with this wicked implement and having it witnessed by a gaggle of onlookers. Almost simultaneously, my cousin and I reached into the waistband of the girls gym shorts we were wearing and lowered them and panties in one motion to around knee level. I could feel my face flush and my breathing accelerate. I was not making eye contact, but I knew all eyes in the family room were riveted on the midsections of Judi and me.

I began growing pubic hair about two years earlier (about six months before Judi) and I had become extremely body conscious. The worst part of the whole spanking ordeal for me was no longer the physical part but the exposure and embarrassment, especially when witnessed. We stood next to each other, arms at sides.

My aunt pointed at Judi then tapped the chair. Judi, familiar with the routine, shuffled over and gripped the sides. Though her legs were tightly together, the shape and contour or her body still left her exposed and it heightened my anxiety to know that I might look the same way in a few moments. Judi was olive skinned and tanned easily, and her bare white bottom stood out in stark contrast. Judi was not fat, but she was thicker and built more solidly, and her bum was definitely wider than mine.

My aunt stood behind her and gave two small taps on Judi’s bottom before drawing back the stick. I heard the stick cut through the air and then land with a resounding CRACK! that seemed to bounce off the walls of the kitchen. There was a beat, then Judi thrusting forward as she let out a low moan. Another beat, and then: “One, ma’am.”

There was a two or three beat pause, then another whoosh CRACK! that drew an even louder moan, followed by the counting of the stroke. Judi kept it under control through the first six strokes, which were spaced across the meat of her bottom in a row of nasty red lines. The seventh landed at the very top of her thigh where it met her bottom, and she let out a small shriek and, while still holding the chair, rose up on her tiptoes. Her voice was high and quivering as she counted: “Seven, ma’am.”

Eight, nine and ten came in rapid fire and I could hear Judi breathing rapidly and sounding as if she were ready to break down completely. Eleven was another cut to the sit spot that elicited the loudest response yet and then 12 quickly followed, directly across the center of her heavily welted rear end. As she counted out: “12 ma’am,” she stood up and began vigorously rubbing her bottom. As she turned to face me, I could see tears freely flowing down her face. She shuffled back over, pants still down, and stood next to me.

It took all of my strength to be able to move my feet to go over to the chair and bend over. I felt weak and almost in a fog. I gripped the sides of the chair until my knuckles turned white. I kept thinking how exposed I must be and what view my cousins were getting.

I heard my aunt say something, but I am not sure what it was, then a whoosh and then a CRACK! For one moment, I felt nothing, then instantaneously there was a searing jolt of pain that radiated out from my bottom through my entire body. I could literally feel the hairs on my arm stand up. I would scream but I could not find air. I lunged forward and then back and somehow managed to croak out: “One, ma’am.”

Just as the electric wave of pain was easing, a second whoosh CRACK! and that same split second delay as the pain coursed through my bottom. This time, I found my voice and let out a loud cry before I counted the stroke. Her cadence was patient and steady. As with Judi, she was painting my entire bum with firm even strokes. The seventh was on my sit spot, a sensitive area that brought out my loudest and deepest response. I looked down and noticed that the seat of the chair now had a healthy deposit of my snot and tears. I pride myself on not breaking for spankings, but this one had been called early.

I had lost my dignity and I was now a sobbing mess. The remaining strokes were carried out in more or less the same way. When the 12th was delivered, it was dead across the center of my pulsating bottom. My knees buckled and I collapsed to the floor, sobbing openly. My aunt told me to get up, and somehow I did, and then worked my way back next to Judi, who also was still sniffling. The punishment was not over. As at my house, we had to each park our noses in a corner of the kitchen and display our marked bottoms in public for 30 minutes. I was desperate to rub, but there was no rubbing allowed in the corner, so I was forced to endure the throb firing through my behind without relief.

We were released from the corner and sent to Judi’s room until dinner. To add to our indignity, both of us had lost shorts and panties during the session. We simply scooped them up from the floor and made a hasty retreat down the hall to Judi’s room, giving everyone a last look at our welted bottoms.

Judi asked if I want her to put Noxema on my behind. I was hesitant but she insisted it helps. My bum was incredibly sensitive and it hurt to even have her lightly touch it. She gently rubbed in Noxema and she was right. It does bring some relief. She wanted me to reciprocate. I was leery. It was awkward. I have never touched someone’s bum before, let alone rubbed cream on it. But I thought it was the polite thing to do, so I did.

Dinner was muted. Even though my aunt’s chairs have cushions, Judi and I still fidgeted but we made it through. It was early bed for us, and I was grateful. It is a cliche, but we both slept on our stomachs.

The next morning, I was slightly better but still sore and stiff, and even simple tasks like using the toilet were more complicated. Judi and I checked out our bottoms to see whose was worse. She got my vote, though both of us had a series of red-purple welts and ridges that in my case would remain for three or four more days.

We went to church and fidgeted on hard wooden pews, somehow thinking the entire congregation knew we had our bare bottoms tanned. When we got home, my aunt had a whole load of menial chores lined up for us.

I left to go home on Monday morning. It was a short bike ride but the small hard seat of the bike made it agonizing none the less. My aunt had called my mom and told her what happened. She did not always do this if I got in trouble there, but this was considered ‘serious’ and she felt she needed to tell her. On the ride over, I wondered if I would be facing the paddle or the strap at home.

When I walked in the door, mom told me to go upstairs, drop my bag in my room and go to her room to wait for her. In my house, that is code for ‘stand in the corner and wait for her to return to spank you’. I shuffled down to my folks’ room and planted myself in the empty corner. About 15 minutes later, I heard mom on the stairs. She entered the room and called me out. She sat at her vanity bench, the same bench she has sat at dozens of times while she warms my behind. She tells me to pull down my shorts and turn around. She studies my bottom and then touches one of the welts. I wince and recoil.

“I think your aunt made her point. Keep those down and go stand in the corner until I say you can come out.”

With that, I shuffled over to the corner, my bare bottom crossed with welts from the stick on display, where it remained for a full half hour, grateful for mom’s mercy.