Graham couldn’t believe he was having a staring contest—or rather, a glaring contest—with a little creature who he should be just taking his belt to. At first, he had decided to be patient with his new mate since obviously she was from a different culture and had been through a lot. Now, however, it seemed like she was disobeying him like it was her job.
Even her own kind were beginning to betray her. Peyton himself had been the one who had alerted him to this newest disobedience, probably because this time it had involved her safety.
“I asked very little from you, Eleanor, but I demanded you not step foot on Level Two, didn’t I?” Graham lectured, squaring his jaw with annoyance.
“You’re not my commander,” she replied as she stuck her nose in the air and crossed her arms.
He wanted badly to inform her that he damn well was her commander, but just about everyone on the ship was watching this interaction, and he knew it. Now was not the time to bicker with her. He had already bickered with Eleanor more than most husbands bickered with their wives in the whole of their marriage.
When it came to disciplining wives, the saying had always been ‘If they’re asking for it, give it to them.’ And Eleanor was asking for it.
“Eleanor, go to our bedroom—right now—and then take down your pants, stick your nose in the corner, and wait for me,” he ordered.
His mate had the nerve to seem startled by this order. Her eyes went large and round and her cheeks went bright pink. She opened her mouth, searching for something to say, but apparently words were too far from her grasp, and time was still ticking by.
“Do you think I’m joking?” He squared his shoulders and pulled himself up from the commander’s chair. “Start moving.” Most Swarii didn’t have to come across as threatening or intimidating to their wives to get them to toe the line. Graham had done both with Eleanor and she always brushed it off, just like she was brushing it off now.
She echoed his stance, as if she was trying to intimidate him right back, which was cute in a way. She was about as intimidating as a mouse.
“Drop dead,” she growled at him. As soon as he started marching toward her, unmoved by her scathing suggestion, she finally decided it was time to get out of his way. She spun around, looking like she had planned on running, but Peyton had positioned himself close behind her and she ended up running against his chest as if it was a wall.
She looked up at Peyton and he looked back, looking unapologetic and intense. Graham was certain he just saw their relationship melt right before his eyes. “You’re just loving this, aren’t you, you colossal prick? I’m glad you finally found a commander where you don’t have to arch your neck down too much when you’re sucking his dick.”
Graham pulled Eleanor up under one arm before Peyton could respond. Graham could tell that his response wasn’t going to be any prettier than hers, based on the way even his ears were turning a dark red as he tried to summon speech.
All the way to the bedroom, Eleanor seemed to be filling in all the swear words Graham had not yet heard, and some he had heard but which she put together in ways that made no sense yet were quite colorful. Her current claim that Peyton was both ‘motherless’ yet at the same time was a ‘son to a miserable bitch of a whore’ was a good example.
It was obvious that Eleanor hadn’t fully comprehended how much trouble she was in until well after the door had been closed behind them, but after a bit she seemed to recognize that Graham was losing his patience with her.
Graham had been considering pushing her into the shower and letting the cold water chill her temper. He had never seen such a horrible scene from a female in all his life, and was more than a little taken aback by it.
But then he saw her look up at him and he could almost see the gears inside her funny little brain begin to turn in another direction. She put up her hands and took a giant step back from him while suggesting, “Let’s be rational here, Graham…” He was apparently wearing his emotions on his sleeve, because she was certainly acting threatened.
He pressed his lips together, reached forward, and grabbed her arm. He half-dragged her to the bathroom sink, not slowing himself down for her shorter steps to keep up with his.
“I think we’ve merely had a misunderstanding…” she was assuring, her voice’s pitch a little higher with alarm.
When he had her at the sink, he fenced her body in against the counter with his own. He reached around her and washed his hands quickly, saying, “The only misunderstanding we’ve had is whether or not you could do or say whatever it was you wanted, and that I would let you.” He dispensed some soap onto his finger and pointed that finger toward her mouth. “Open your mouth,” he demanded.
Her eyes widened, and she pressed her lips together as firmly as he imagined she could. “Open now,” he growled. Not even he was sure how much patience he had. His nerves felt frayed by her poor behavior and lack of respect toward him.
She shook her head, looking at him like he had lost his mind.
He wanted to throttle whatever wild animal had deemed to raise Eleanor to be the girl standing in front of him. Disobedience in a mate was one thing, but then she had the nerve to kick up a fuss when she was punished. He simply could not, and would not believe that she’d never had her mouth washed out before. The punishment was widespread across the more intelligent lifeforms of the galaxy, mostly used for backtalk to bad language. Eleanor, of course, had done both.
He locked his jaw with frustration and heaved a short, heavy sigh as he washed the soap off his hand. His next movement was to spin her around and to hoist her up so that she was bent over that sink with her feet dangling well off the floor. He reached around her front as she scrambled to get footing, quickly pulling her loose-fitting leggings down around her calves. Her panties quickly followed.
“Let us get on the same page here, wife. When I give an order, you are going to obey without acting like a stubborn, spoiled child. Am I clear?”
“Am I clear?” Graham seethed, obviously expecting some sort of response from her other than her trying to press herself up from the sink and back on her feet.
Ellie had apparently somehow upset this giant of a man. It seemed like he was acting very dramatic when all she’d done was go up onto the second floor—which was just as amazing as she’d suspected it would be as soon as he’d made it deliciously off-limits.
She was still reeling from Peyton’s blatant betrayal when she was met with Graham’s desire to wash her mouth out. Sure, Peyton had threatened to wash her mouth out lots of times, but she’d thought that was just a turn of phrase that mean Texans liked to use. It had never been something that she had taken as a literal threat.
She really hoped that when Graham had bent her over the sink, it was because her confidence had turned him on so much that he was going to just unzip himself and mount her for a round of wild lovemaking.
Her hopes were dashed when he began to spank her bare ass with the palm of his hand. His swats were fierce enough to make their first night together seem like a couple of love pats. She was quickly realizing now that she was in very deep shit, because he was only a few moments in and she was already going into a wild panic. “You’re hurting me, you asshole!” she shrieked, then tried to catch her breath.
The assault suddenly became worse in response. Although her brain wasn’t good for much at the moment, it did inform her that it could probably even get worse than this. Graham was much larger than her, stronger than her, and there was no way he was spanking her as hard as could—or as hard as he probably wanted to.
She began to cry out from the spanks, which in themselves were deafening. When Graham eventually spoke, he had to almost shout just to be heard. “Are you ready to be compliant?”
“Yes!” she immediately replied, ready to do the Chicken Dance if that was what it was going to take for this pain to stop.
He finally let her drop back down to her feet and spun her around again. Her legs were still twisted up in her leggings, and she put her hands over her bare mound to keep from being too exposed. She noticed that the soap was back on his finger, and he was looking more determined than ever to get it into her mouth. “Open,” he said, dismissing the pitiful look she now tried to put on to get him to lighten up.
She knew she didn’t have a lot of choice in the matter, so after hesitating a few times, she opened her mouth ever so slightly. As soon as Graham had enough opening, she had the alien’s large, sausage-sized finger thrust into her mouth.
The way she’d gotten her mouth to open was by thinking, Really, how bad could it be?
Well, it could be pretty bad. Soap tasted like pure, goopy evil. It was jarringly bad, and even had a stinging, burning sensation that caused her eyes to water.
She sputtered and gagged in no time at all, trying to pull her whole head away from him. That only worked for a microsecond before the soapy finger was reinserted while his other hand grabbed her chin and held her still. “Bite me and you’ll regret it, little girl, let me tell you,” he warned in response to her mutinous glare.
He didn’t seem to care that she was gagging and probably turning green as he ran his soapy finger over her every tooth, over her gums, over her tongue, and even across the roof of her mouth.
“You represent me, and therefore you will only speak intelligently and reasonably to everyone you come across. You are going into a culture where we don’t have to speak to each other, we choose to. We watch every word we say, and you will as well. Get used to taking responsibility for every word that comes out of your mouth,” he told her, and then spun her back around. “Spit,” he ordered.
She was glad to spit that stinging flavor out of her mouth quickly and repeatedly. She even cupped her hands together under the faucet to try to get some water to swish it all out, but before she could do that more than once, he loomed over her back. She watched him warily in the mirror. “Do you have any more filthy language or insults that need to be washed out?” he asked her, sounding much calmer than he had a few minutes ago.
She shook her head, grinding her teeth together to keep from saying exactly what she thought of him right now. She was lightheaded from the discomfort she’d felt, and she felt herself beginning to shiver with emotion.
“Are you sure?” he threatened.
She wanted so badly to slap him that her palm itched. Inflicting any sort of pain to him at all would have been the greatest of all delights. “Positive,” she growled in reply.
“Good.” Without hesitation, and without letting her have a moment to pull her pants back up, he grabbed her elbow and dragged her back into the bedroom, seeming not to care that she was tripping over her pants the whole time. When he got to the edge of the bed, he turned, sat down, and tugged her leggings and panties the rest of the way off.
Goosebumps began to prickle down her arms as she realized that he planned to spank her more, but just as the horrible realization struck, he yanked her body over his knees. “Okay!” she surrendered. Now was not a good time to be brave. “Okay, I’m sorry!”
“No,” he said over her grimly. “I’m sorry. Apparently, I have given you the wrong impression of me. Let me correct that now. When I ask you to do something, I expect you to obey me. You don’t have to like it, but I expect you to obey nonetheless.”
She gave an angry sob. She couldn’t believe that this was happening. Not again! “I’m not your pet!” she snapped. “I don’t have to do what you say!” Hadn’t she been freed?
Apparently not. The skin on her bottom was already tender and burning from his earlier attentions.
She felt Graham’s large, warm hand rub across her bottom again, and she finally realized how huge his hand was in comparison to her bottom—it covered most of that territory. His work would be easy and very efficient.
“You’re my mate, and if you don’t choose to be an obedient one, then you’ll find yourself in this position very often, I guarantee you. There is one leader in this relationship, and that is me. Get that clear.”
“I hate you!” she shouted, feeling helpless and defeated.
“Fine, hate me if you choose. But you will obey me,” he snapped. Unless she was mistaken, she was almost certain that she could hear pain and frustration in his tone.
Just as she was beginning to wonder if he was feeling just as helpless as she was, the spanking commenced.
It was hard to say how long the spanking lasted. Probably not for more than five minutes, but for her it felt like she was kicking powerlessly over his lap for days. During these long minutes, she went through a range of emotions: anger was the first. She clenched her teeth shut, hoping to play the bad ‘whipping boy’ who suffered in silence.
The idea of silence quickly melted down until she was kicking, crying, and wailing.
Then suddenly, out of nowhere, remorse hit her.
She had felt remorse slightly after Peyton had switched her. She’d had a brief moment where she could see things from his point of view and felt like she did, in a way, deserve a punishment for putting them both in danger.
But she hadn’t expected to ever feel remorseful about disobeying Graham. The emotion, and the clarity of it, hit her like a truck. Graham’s point of view must be that this alien girl that he wouldn’t have ever chosen to marry couldn’t follow the simplest instructions. He was the ship’s captain and his new mate was constantly undermining him and making him appear weak and unfit to command. What had Graham done to deserve a mate who was so completely wrong for him?
Whether or not that was actually Graham’s perspective, or if she was reading too much into it, was irrelevant. She was suddenly thinking, Why can’t I just be a good mate and obey him? It wouldn’t hurt me. He didn’t ask for much. Maybe I do deserve this. Maybe I wanted this reaction on some level…
This thought passing through her mind made her realize that maybe she wasn’t in her right mind. There was no way in hell that she’d ever wanted a childlike chastisement that would reduce her to tears. No, no. This was just another case where she didn’t think things through and she was sloppy enough to get caught.
Still, she was reacting to the spanking differently now. She was crying, but now she was crying softer. Her throat was sore and dry from shouting and screaming in protest, and although his spanks felt more and more painful against a bottom that was getting persistently more and more tender, she was too tired to fight against him.
“Are you going to be a good girl?” she heard him ask.
“Y-y-yes!” she sobbed, pressing her face against the blankets under her chin.
Finally, the spanks stopped and the room silenced. She could feel her bottom actually throb, and it felt like it had been tenderized. She could leave his lap now, she knew, but she made no move to do so. She found that she didn’t want to move. She just wanted to sob there, realizing that this relationship might doom her more than her relationship with Jazeel. While Jazeel didn’t control any part of her mind or soul, Graham apparently did.
How could she be free, she wondered, if he already had such tight webs woven around her? How could she escape the part of herself that had apparently decided that she was his?
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