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His Willful Bride by Maggie Carpenter – Serialization (Part Two)

Did you miss Chapters 1-4? You can find them in August 5th’s newsletter.

Chapter Five

His Willful Bride by Maggie CarpenterThree months later

Wringing her hands, Mildred moved quickly through the resplendent ballroom making sure everything was as it should be. Arranging a wedding with so little time had been difficult, but she had succeeded because, in spite of her husband’s objections, she’d had the foresight to start preparations the moment Lord Pemberly had asked permission to court Charlotte. Hugo had been against jumping into the arrangements, but Mildred didn’t want to take any chances, and would not see the wedding delayed because of last-minute glitches. She’d have moved the stars and the planets if she’d had to, and she almost did.

It was Charlotte who wanted to wed in September, quoting the popular phrase, Marry in September’s shine, your living will be rich and fine, and Edward was more than happy to oblige her. Now that the day was upon them, the majestic house was a hive of activity.

The earl and his wife were high-profile, important aristocrats, and though Lord Pemberly did not have their fame, he came from a long line of nobles, and was considered one of the most eligible bachelors in London society. The announcement of his engagement had caused tremendous gossip, and because his fiancée was the miscreant, Lady Charlotte Winthrop, the wedding became the most talked-about social event of the season.

Edward had insisted they attend the many balls and parties during the weeks of their courtship, and Charlotte had been so happy she had not only agreed, but had been a merry companion. Those who knew her, and even those who only knew of her reputation, were amazed at her transformation, but little did they know she couldn’t abide most of them, and her warmth and gracious behavior was due entirely to Edward’s company. As long as he was at her side she was happy, and it was easy to be courteous and pleasant.

Kimberwick Hall was playing host to a number of wedding guests who would be staying for several days, and Edward had been given an apartment in the east wing. There had been a few celebratory dinners leading up to the wedding, and while Charlotte had attended most of them, the two days prior to her nuptials she had withdrawn, stating she required time for reflection, and to think about the new life ahead of her. She had always been such a mercurial young woman, no one was surprised or particularly bothered by the impolite behavior. Charlotte was being Charlotte. The truth was, she was desperate to escape the stress of the endless conversations about things that she considered, as she told Helen, tedious and boring.

During those two days, Edward had stolen her away for secret moments, whisking her off to their forest for a few minutes of solitude and conversation. He always left her with a kiss, sometimes trailing his fingertips down her arm, sending erotic shivers through her body.

Now the time had finally arrived. The service was to be held at the house, presided over by the local clergyman, and as Charlotte readied herself for the most important moment of her life, she had not a second of doubt that Edward Pemberly III was the right man to be her husband.

Readying herself in her bedchamber, she was being attended by two young women with whom she had developed a comfortable friendship, both of whom had always believed her to be enormously courageous, and Helen, who could not stop wiping a tear from her eye as she hovered and fussed. Charlotte was gazing at her reflection in the mirror when the clock on her mantel chimed, making her jump, and she realized she was much more nervous than she’d thought.

“Are you ready?” her aunt asked, bustling into the room. “Oh, my, don’t you look lovely.”

“Thank you,” Charlotte smiled. “Yes, I’m ready. I’m very ready.”

“Come along then. Your uncle is waiting. Everyone is waiting, it’s time.”

Moving from the room, Charlotte couldn’t feel her feet touch the floor, and it was almost as if she were outside her body watching herself and those around her. She was sure that the amazing, wonderful, magnificent event was too spectacular to be happening to her, but when she saw Edward the reality hit, and her heart swelled to the point she thought it would burst.

The ceremony was subdued, almost grave, and as they spoke their vows, Charlotte couldn’t understand why something that was making her so happy should be so solemn, and she had to fight the temptation to shout out something amusing. It drew to a close, and the wedded couple made their way to the reception room to partake of cake and accept the congratulations of the many well-wishers, but a few minutes after the celebration began, Charlotte looked up at Edward earnestly.

“I need to do something. I will only be a moment,” she said quietly.

“Now?” he asked with a puzzled frown.

“Yes,” she nodded.

“Very well, please don’t take too long.”

“I won’t,” she beamed up at him.

He knew she was up to mischief. It was written all over her face, and as he watched her quickly slip through the gathered guests and disappear down the hallway, he didn’t even attempt to guess what that mischief might be.

“Where is she going?” Mildred inquired, having rushed across to Edward’s side when she saw her niece hurry away. “She shouldn’t be leaving.”

“She needed to attend to something,” Edward casually replied.

The disapproval was clear in the woman’s eyes. Over the previous several weeks he had come to understand why his high-spirited Charlotte and her aunt were oil and water. Mildred was a dour, rigid woman, and though he didn’t condone Charlotte’s defiant and willful attitude, he could see how Mildred’s stiff demeanor would have been like a red flag to a bull.

“I hope she’s back quickly,” Mildred whispered tersely. “The guests expect to speak with her; they want to extend their congratulations and share their joy with you both.”

“Indeed,” Edward replied tactfully.

It was only a minute or two later that Sterling, the earl’s austere, straight-backed butler, approached carrying a silver tray. Upon it sat an envelope with Edward’s name scrawled across the front. It was Charlotte’s script. More curious than worried, Edward scooped it up, and hurriedly ripping open the envelope, he read the note inside.

Meet me in the woods near the rose garden. Your loving wife, C.

Breaking into a broad grin, he shook his head. She’d had enough of the pomp and ceremony, and wanted her new husband all to herself.

Charlotte, this is precisely who you are. Well, my dear, you shall have me, and perhaps more of me than you expect.

Making polite excuses, feeling Mildred’s displeasure, Edward extricated himself from the company and made his way down the hallway, through the drawing room, and out onto the terrace. The day was perfect, sunny and warm with puffy clouds, but being the end of September he could feel the slightest suggestion of the approaching autumn. Walking quickly through the rose garden, he entered the thicket and spied Charlotte immediately.

She looked like a fine oil painting.

Standing in the sheen of a sunbeam, her cream gown glowed golden, and the veil framing her dark hair appeared to be a halo. She was perfectly still, and walking towards her, he believed he was seeing her as she truly was; an angel kissed by the heavens.

Such a vision. Yes, you are heaven-sent, with just enough devil in you to make you perfect.

“Hello, wife,” he said with a smile. “I don’t need to ask why you’re here.”

“I couldn’t abide it,” she sighed. “I was tired of all those people. I wanted you all to myself.”

“I know, but do you think it was the polite thing to do?”

“Of course not, but I didn’t leave to be polite, I left because—”

“You’ve already told me why you left,” he said, taking her hands. “We may not like the dictates of society, but that doesn’t mean we can ignore them.”

“I’m not ignoring them,” she said with a cheeky grin. “I’m choosing not to follow them.”

“I think that’s the same thing,” he winked.

“Um, it is?”

“I believe so.”

“Be that as it may, I have what I want. You. Here. Alone with me.”

“Charlotte Pemberly, you are a very naughty girl, but you are now my wife—”

“Guilty on both counts,” she interrupted, her eyes sparkling up at him.

“And that means,” he continued, raising his eyebrows, “I can deal with your naughtiness.”

“It does?”

“What do you think happens to naughty, cheeky, willful wives?” he asked, slowly leading her to a fallen tree trunk.

In a flash, Charlotte suddenly knew his intent. He was going to spank her.

“Edward, you’re not going to lay me over your knee, are you?”

“Well guessed,” he nodded. “You are as clever as you are naughty.”

“No, please, no, not here,” she protested, trying to pause his step. “My petticoats! This is scandalous!”

“Yes, here,” he decreed, cutting her off as he perched himself carefully on the rough wood. “It seems right that you should feel my spanking hand for first time in this forest. This is where I first told you how I felt, where I proposed, and where I first kissed you.”

“But, uh, Edward, please, uh, shouldn’t we return to our guests?”

“My goodness,” he exclaimed, raising his eyebrows, “now she wants to go back to the very people from whom she wished to escape. When we return, and we will, you will do so with a very warm bottom, assuming I can find my way underneath all that finery.”

Abruptly reaching out and grabbing her wrist, with a quick jerk he had her across his lap, landing with a squeal. As she wriggled her objection, he fought the layers of clothing, finally managing to push them back from her drawers.

“Stop it, stop fussing,” he said sternly, landing a quick swat on each of her cheeks. “Your dress is attempting to suffocate me.”

Ow,” she wailed, her hand flailing, trying to find its way past the folds of fabric to protect her precious posterior.

“Charlotte,” he said patiently, catching her wrist, “I am going to spank you, and you will not struggle, or scream out, or attempt to cover yourself. If you do any of those things, I shall cut myself a switch, and I can assure you a stout switch carries a much stricter message than my hand. Do you understand?”

“Yes, sir, I understand,” she panted, “but—”

“No, Charlotte, no argument,” he said firmly. “I shall give you a moment to compose yourself while I organize these endless layers of material. I suggest you take several deep breaths.”

Though mortified that he was gazing upon her undergarments, she tried to do as he said and took a long deep breath. As she exhaled, he released her wrist; dropping her arm, she curled both her hands around his ankle for support. Her face was burning with embarrassment, and she was beginning to think she’d made a dreadful mistake running from the house.

When she’d written her note and handed it to Sterling, finding herself draped over her new husband’s knee in the forest was the last thing she’d expected. She thought he’d sweep her into his arms and kiss her, roam his fingertips down her back, whisper in her ear, not throw her over his lap for an unfortunate meeting with his smacking hand.

Taking another breath, trying not to think about the view being presented to his eye, she did her best to resign herself to her fate, but even though she was anxious about what was to come, she couldn’t deny the tingling excitement that was rippling through her body, and she certainly couldn’t ignore the fluttering butterflies that had burst to life in her stomach.

“Are you feeling a bit better?” Edward asked, sensing she had settled.

“Yes, sir, but please don’t spank me too hard.”

“One thing you will learn, my dearest, is that such requests will have no bearing whatsoever on the severity of your discipline.”

He had managed to gather the folds of material into a semblance of order, and raising his hand he dispatched a series of slow, hot slaps, moving with an artful rhythm from cheek to cheek.

Charlotte gasped with each swat. Her thin cotton drawers offered little protection, and as his open palm continued to rain its discipline, her fingers gripped his ankle and she bit her lip to keep from crying out.

“I suspect your bottom is growing quite pink,” he remarked, not breaking the cadence of his slaps. “I doubt these thin drawers are providing much of a shield, but regardless, I’m going to unbutton the flap and feast my eyes on your naked backside.”

“Sir, oh, sir,” she whimpered.

“You are my wife, Charlotte, it is my right, but mostly it will be my joy, and it should be yours too. Do you not wish me to see you without your clothes?”

“No, I, uh, I don’t know, sir,” she stammered. “I am embarrassed that you will see me here. I thought it would be under candlelight, not in the brightness of the day.”

“It is much better this way. The beauty of your body is to be admired, not hidden in darkness,” he said warmly, pausing his hand. “Is your skin stinging?”

“Yes, sir, it most certainly is,” she replied, adding a kick to emphasis her answer.

“My hand smacking you bare will hurt more, but I must repeat my admonition. No crying out, no wriggling, and no putting your hand behind you. Understood?”

“Yes, sir.”

“I’m going to open the flap now, and behold your naked charms.”

As she felt his fingers unfasten the buttons, Charlotte took a breath and squeezed her eyes shut, wishing she’d worn the regular bloomers, the new, modern kind that simply tied at the waist. The air touched her hot flesh, and had she not needed to grip his ankles she would have buried her face in her hands.

“My sweet girl, what a lovely bottom you have. Full and round, and yes, certainly pink. Not pink enough, but I shall soon remedy that.”

Gazing at the glorious sight sent a surge of energy to his cock, and he knew he wouldn’t be able to continue much longer without having to deal with a very stiff erection. He gave each cheek a small pinch, then returned to his work, increasing the pace of his smacks, but holding back on the force. Feeling his hand bounce off her behind was immeasurably satisfying, but the need in his member was growing with every swat.

“Two more hard slaps to finish,” he announced, and immediately sent his hand upon her skin with a brisk swat, adding a bright red blotch to finish the job. “Now I shall rub you for a brief moment so you will have a small taste of the pleasure my hand can offer.”

As his soft palm began to smooth itself across her skin, she let out a long breath. His hand did feel good, it felt very good, and she could feel a thick wetness between her legs, and an earnest craving for him to touch there.

“Sir,” she said in a soft, hushed voice.

“Yes, my dearest? Does my caressing hand give you comfort?”

“It feels wonderful,” she replied. “Please, will you, uh…”

“Will I what? You may ask me anything you wish.”

“Between my legs,” she mumbled, “can you touch me there?”

His cock almost burst in his trousers, and he couldn’t prevent the groan that left his lips.

“Oh, that I could, and I wish to, I very much wish to, but I fear if I were to grant your request, we would never return to the house,” and this is not where I wish to take your maidenhead.

“Then let us not return to the house,” she begged.

“We must, and we must stay a little longer, but then we can climb into our carriage and head to my home in London. There, my dearest, I will finish this spanking, and then I will most definitely touch you,” he promised as he raised the flap and buttoned it back in place. “Now then, up on your feet, and let’s straighten out this magnificent dress.”

He helped her up, the folds of fabric falling around her as he did, but before fixing her clothes, he held her against him in a tender, loving hug.

“You have had your first experience of my discipline, and my spanking hand is something you will often experience.”

“It carries a great sting,” she moaned as she sank into his hold.

“Indeed, a sting that you will sometimes yearn for, and another sting that will leave no doubt that you’ve been punished. You are in need of this, Charlotte, and you know it.”

“Yes, sir, I do, but that doesn’t mean I have to like it,” though I do in a most peculiar way.

“You are a treasure,” he said, smiling, “a precious treasure that must be protected and cared for. Are you ready to head back?”

“No, but I will, because I believe if I refuse, you will spank me again until I agree.”

“That is correct,” he exclaimed, releasing her and smoothing out her dress and train. “How quickly you learn.”

“Perhaps I shall learn so fast and so well, you will no longer need to put me over your knee,” she suggested.

“You will always need to be spanked, Charlotte. That is just the way it is.”

Chapter Six

As the guests escorted the happy couple to their carriage and waved them off, Charlotte settled back and gazed at her new husband. He had made good on this threat and had spanked her, and while initially shocked and mortified, she had found the ensuing heat in her bottom seemed to permeate her entire being, making her yearn to be back in his embrace.

Standing in the reception room making small talk had been almost impossible, and she’d had a strange but marvelous sensation when her thighs began to involuntarily squeeze together. She’d been so lost in her thoughts, Edward had to remind her to change into her traveling clothes so they could leave.

Her state had been evident to him, and as the carriage rolled along he was glad he had insisted that her lady’s maid travel in a separate carriage behind them. Normally Helen would have journeyed ahead with Reese to make sure everything was prepared for their arrival, but Charlotte couldn’t face her big day without Helen’s help. Since Edward wanted Charlotte to himself on the short journey, he’d arranged the second carriage, giving the additional expense not a thought, and once they were well on their way, he closed the side curtains and moved across to sit beside her.

“You need to be in my arms, don’t you, Charlotte?”

“Yes, I do, so much,” she murmured, nestling against him. “All I want is to be close to you. It doesn’t matter where we are.”

“I’m sure you will appreciate my home in London,” he said, smiling. “It’s a small house, but I have managed to allocate a room for you, so if you need time to yourself you can have it.”

“Edward, thank you, that sounds heavenly, but I doubt I’ll need it,” she replied, twinkling up at him. “I can’t imagine ever wanting to be by myself.”

“I hope I can depend on you to behave appropriately. You will be the lady of that house. We can’t have any of your hijinks.”

“Hijinks?”

“I’m very well aware of how naughty you can be. Stories travel quickly through society, as well you know.”

“Edward, you’re scolding me and I haven’t done anything yet.”

“Yet? What do you mean, yet?”

“Just a figure of speech,” she said with a mischievous twinkle.

“When you smile like that it makes me nervous,” he said with a wry grin. “I heard about what you did with that cream cake when you had afternoon tea with your aunt and her friends at the Langham.”

A pink blush crossed her face, and she gazed out the carriage window.

“We’ve reached the outskirts of the main part of the city,” she remarked, ignoring his comment.

“If you pull a stunt like that—”

“Edward, I was a young, foolish girl then. Now please stop lecturing, or I will do something naughty.”

“I believe it was only last year,” he said, raising his eyebrows, “and I’d be careful about making threats if I were you. Don’t forget, I still have to finish spanking you when we arrive at my home.”

“But you spanked me in the forest,” she protested.

“And I told you at the time I would finish later, or did you conveniently forget about that?”

“No,” she sighed, “but I thought you may have.”

“Charlotte, my dearest, an unfinished spanking is not something I will ever forget. Speaking of that episode at the Langham, my curiosity has been piqued. Please tell me exactly what happened with the cream cake, the whole story. Leave nothing out.”

“Why?”

“Why? Because I asked you to, and that should be enough.”

“Oh! Yes, I suppose it should be,” she sighed.

“Yes, it most certainly should,” he said firmly. “Quite frankly, I would like to know if what I heard matches your version of events.”

“Very well,” she sighed. “Auntie insisted that she show me off to her friends in hopes of encouraging meetings with their sons and nephews.”

“I’m quite sure you wanted nothing to do with that,” he grinned.

“Nothing!” she said earnestly.

“Go on. You were seated around the table, and…?”

“It was sooo tedious,” she groaned.

“But, Charlotte, most things are tedious to you!”

“True, I admit it,” she said loftily. “Anyway, auntie had excused herself, and when no one was looking I slipped a cream cake into my lap. When she returned, just as she sat down…”

“Yes, go ahead, just as she sat down, what?”

“Sorry, but this still makes me giggle,” Charlotte tittered. “Just as she sat down I put the cream cake underneath her.”

“I had heard you’d put an entire sponge, covered in cream, on her chair!” Edward exclaimed.

“You did? No, it was just one little cake, but if I’d been able to use an entire cream-covered sponge I gladly would have, although, when I think about it, she would have felt that.”

“She didn’t feel the cake you put there?”

“No, she had no idea.”

“None of the women saw you put it on her chair?”

“I am much more clever than that, Edward,” she giggled. “No, they didn’t, but they were still happy to accuse me.”

“You got off scot-free, didn’t you?”

“I did,” Charlotte gleefully replied. “Auntie was sure I was the guilty party, I mean, there was no other explanation, but as I said to her, who knows how that cake ended up on the chair?”

“Young lady, if you ever do anything like that again, you will receive some very serious swats. In fact, I might think about giving them to you anyway.”

“I wouldn’t have told you if I’d known that.”

“Then you would be facing extra smacks for refusing to answer my question.”

“I don’t think this is very fair,” she grumbled.

“Do you think what you did to your aunt Mildred was very fair?”

“I most certainly do. I had no desire to go to that stupid, tedious lunch, and I’d told her so. She wouldn’t listen, but she never asked me to attend another one, so I considered my little prank a triumph. I still do!”

“You are such an imp,” he said, shaking his head.

“That’s one of the reasons you love me,” she mused.

“Indeed it is, and I think we’ve had enough conversation. I think it’s time I learned a little more about my precious new wife,” he said, lowering his voice and raising a single, wicked eyebrow.

“What would you like to know about me?” she asked coyly, titillated by the change in his demeanor.

“I want to know if you like this…” he whispered, touching his lips to her neck and softly sliding his tongue against her skin.

“Ooh, yes, most definitely,” she moaned, closing her eyes.

“Hmmm, and what if I put my mouth here?” he continued, journeying to the hollow of her neck.

“Edward, yes, you make me feel so much.”

“Such a beautiful bosom,” he purred, pressing his lips to the fabric covering her breasts. “I must see the skin under this dress.”

“Edward,” she gasped as he began to unbutton the tightly closed bodice.

“Is that a breath of fear, or modesty, or something else?” he murmured as his fingers continued to make their way down the garment.

“It is everything,” she panted, “but I don’t want you to stop, even though we are in a carriage. Surely this must be scandalous.”

“You are a fearless soul,” he muttered, lowering his lips to kiss the skin above her cleavage.

“Edward, you are making me feel quite faint.”

“Do you like this,” he muttered, moving his hand to her breast to give it a warm squeeze.

“Oh, yes, sir, I do, I do.”

“You called me sir, and that’s something I like very much,” he said, squeezing again.

“Sir,” she repeated, hoping for, and gratefully receiving, another warm squeeze as a reward.

“And if I were to slide my hand under your garments?”

Lifting his eyes, seeing her head had rolled back and her eyes were closed, he moved his hand to the top of her open bodice and pushed past the underwear, molding his hand around her fleshy mound. She let out a strange cry, then to his joy she arched her back, pressing against his grasp.

“I love that, sir.”

Searching out her nipple as best he could within the confines of her clothing, he stirred it between his thumb and forefinger, eliciting a long murmur of pleasure. He dallied a few moments, then carefully removing his hand, he brought his lips to hers, kissing her fervently, touching her lips with his tongue.

“Edward, you have taken my breath away,” she murmured as he broke apart and cradled her.

“I shall be doing much more than that later. I shall make you feel very happy indeed.”

“I am already so happy. How can I be happier?”

“You shall see, sweet girl, provided you behave properly.”

“I will, I promise,” she swore, curling against him.

“I’m sure you will, at least until some naughty little prank comes to mind, or you decide to defy me.”

“I shall ignore my naughty thoughts.”

“I’m sure you will try.”

“You don’t believe me?” she said indignantly, lifting her head from the crook of his shoulder to stare up at him.

“Of course I believe you. You will try, but it’s in your nature to be willful and a bit mischievous.”

“Maybe, but you’ll see, I’ll be an angel,” she said firmly.

“It makes me very pleased that you want to be,” he said, running his finger around the frame of her face.

“Edward, why must you spank me again?” she asked sweetly. “I’m still tender from before.”

“There are certain things you must understand.”

“What things? Just tell me. You don’t need to spank me to tell me.”

“Indeed I do,” he said firmly.

“But why?”

“I thought you were going to be an angel. This very conversation demonstrates why I must take my hand to your bottom again.”

“I don’t understand. I was only asking.”

“You may not question my authority.”

“I’m not questioning your authority,” she frowned. “I just don’t think it’s fair that—”

“Charlotte, enough!”

“But—”

“Look! We’re nearing my neighborhood. You’ll soon see your new London home.”

“But the spanking thing, I want to talk more about it!”

“My goodness. You are a stubborn young woman,” he declared, shaking his head. “Go and sit opposite me. One more word and I’ll spank you right here in this carriage!”

No!

“Yes, now do as I say, go and sit opposite me.”

“But I like being here, next to you,” she bleated.

“That’s it,” he said sharply, grabbing her wrist and yanking her over his lap.

No, Edward,” she squealed.

“This is most inconvenient,” he said sternly, “but you will learn I mean what I say. Darn these confounded petticoats.”

Hastily pushing away the folds of silk, he landed several hard smacks, then unceremoniously shuffled her to the seat across from him. Then, to her chagrin, he removed the small, black notebook and gold clutch pencil from his pocket.

“No, not your book,” she cried, trying to smooth her dress.

“We will be pulling up to my front door shortly,” he remarked as he scribbled. “You are quite red in the face. Please catch your breath as I see to things outside. Helen and Reese will take care of the unpacking while we have tea to refresh ourselves, then, my dearest,” he said, lifting his eyes, “I will see to you.”

Though already scarlet, Charlotte felt a fresh hot blush creep up her neck and over her face. The butterflies had begun their dance, and she was keenly aware of the strange wetness between her legs that had begun as he’d toyed with her, then shockingly spanked her. Not sure how to respond, she pushed aside the curtain and gazed out the carriage window at the hustle and bustle of the busy city streets.

Putting away his notebook and pencil, he studied his bride. She possessed a passionate soul, a sharp mind, and a willful nature, and she had lacked authority for many years. Her aunt and uncle had been ill-equipped to handle such a complicated creature, and he could well imagine how frustrated and exasperated they must have been, but her strong will and independent spirit aroused him, and he was greatly looking forward to his life with her. Without even meaning to, she would constantly challenge him and keep him on his toes, and he knew there was every possibility she would, on occasion, be one step ahead of him. She had wile and instinct. It was inevitable.

“I believe we have arrived,” he said as the carriage rolled to a stop.

“How exciting,” she beamed, determined to put their small fracas behind her.

“Wait in here until I fetch you,” he said, climbing from the carriage.

She was about to object. She wanted to be on the street, to see the comings and goings. Most especially, she wanted to watch him take charge of things. A subtle feeling of excitement would flow through her entire body whenever she observed him governing people, but she managed to hold her tongue and sit quietly as he left her and closed the carriage door.

Edward knew she was eager to leave the cab, but making her sit and wait was important. He needed to exert his authority when any opportunity presented itself. It was training. Obedience was built on the small building blocks as well as the large. He was laying a foundation.

The front door opened and his butler, Harding, appeared. Edward introduced the austere-looking man to Helen, and as he issued his directives, he could feel Charlotte’s eyes on him. Taking his time, he spent a few minutes discussing recent matters of his household with Harding, purposely making her wait, then finally turned back to the carriage, and waving Harding away, opened the carriage door himself.

“Come along, Charlotte.”

“At last,” she exclaimed.

He broke into a smile. It had been difficult for his young bride to be patient, and he was proud of her.

“You can be a good girl when you want to be,” he said quietly as she climbed out.

“Yes, I can,” she said, then unable to resist, she added, “as you say, when I want to be.”

“I hope, now that you belong to me, you will want to be good girl more than you don’t,” he murmured.

Lifting her hand to his elbow, she clutched it tightly.

“Yes, Edward, I’m sure I will.”

Chapter Seven

After introducing Charlotte to the staff, then discreetly instructing Harding they were not to be disturbed, Edward took her on a quick tour of the three-story, Mayfair townhouse, excluding the staff quarters, which were below the stairs. The first floor housed two reception rooms—one grand, the other small but elegant—the dining hall, and a smaller, intimate dining room, and at the back of the house, a large kitchen. The second story offered a drawing room, a library, a study, and an informal salon.

“I know you’re used to your uncle’s majestic home,” Edward remarked, taking her hand and leading her up the last flight of stairs, “but I’m only here once a week, sometimes less, so a residence this size suits my purposes. My country estate is much more like your uncle’s.”

“Edward, I think this is lovely,” she said, smiling. “It’s cozy.”

“I suppose it is,” he said thoughtfully. “I’d never considered describing it that way.”

Walking her along the wide hallway towards the double doors at the end, he showed her each of the three guest rooms, but reaching the last, he paused and took both her hands.

“This is for you, Charlotte. I hope you like it.”

Pushing open the door, Charlotte entered a bedchamber decorated in lemon and white toile, a white triple-mirrored vanity, a gleaming brass bed, and a white marble fireplace. When she moved into the bathroom, she found a canopy shower and let out a squeal.

“Edward, it’s perfect,” she beamed. “Thank you.”

“I’m glad you’re pleased,” he said proudly, and he was.

Edward had taken great care when he’d worked with the decorator. He wanted Charlotte’s room to be happy and uplifting, and the pale lemon and white had achieved his goal.

“Now, my quarters,” he announced.

Ushering her back into the hallway, they walked the few steps to the double doors, and pushing them open, he gestured for her to move ahead. As she walked in, she let out a small gasp. It was a man’s room, with dark coffered ceilings, masculine but exquisite furnishings, and a large, dark wood, four-posted, canopied bed, draped with heavy burgundy fabric. Settling in his forest green velvet armchair by the unlit fireplace, Edward watched his new bride as she wandered through the room, taking it all in.

“It’s simply marvelous,” she declared as she returned from inspecting his bathroom. “I just love all that wood around the tub, and you have a needle shower. How exciting.”

“Delighted that you approve,” he said warmly.

“I like the room you had decorated for me, very much, and I’m grateful, but I want to be in here with you, always!”

“Come here. I want you to kneel in front of me.”

“Kneel in front of you?”

“That’s what I said, directly in front of me, on the rug.”

A flurry of anticipation rippled through her, and feeling quivery, she moved across to him and dropped to her knees.

“So, my beauty,” he said softly, leaning forward and locking her eyes, “it is time for us to take care of our unfinished affairs, then we will proceed with, shall we say, other pleasures.”

“I thought we were going to have tea,” she breathed.

“I’ve decided tea can wait.”

“Can’t we go straight to the other pleasures? I swear, you really don’t need to spank me further. I’ll be perfectly good, I promise.”

“Now, now, don’t start with that again! Not unless you want additional punishment.”

“Sorry.”

“Sorry, sir,” he corrected her.

“Oh, sorry, sir,” she said, then feeling the rush of butterflies again, she added, “I have a request.”

“A request? What might that be?”

“I have brought something, uh, special, to wear for you,” she said shyly. “I would very much like to take a shower and change into it.”

“Ah, yes, I understand. Very well, but before you go there’s something we must discuss first.”

“Yes, sir?”

“Kneeling before me as you are, does that feel good to you, does it feel natural?”

A slight frown crossed her brow and she slowly nodded.

“Strangely, it does. When you first told me to kneel here I thought it was odd, but it doesn’t feel that way. Natural, yes, sir. It does feel natural. How peculiar.”

“From now on, if I instruct you to go to my chair, this is what I mean. We could be dining, or having tea, or if we’re in the country, we could be walking in the gardens, but if I say, go to my chair, it means you will immediately come to my bedchamber, kneel in front of the chair and wait. In my country home there is a chair placed just as this one is, next to the fireplace. One more thing. When you’re kneeling like this, or whenever I discipline you, you must always call me sir.”

Charlotte felt a chill spill down her spine, and the now-familiar hot blush crawl across her face.

“As you wait,” he continued, “you will place your hands behind your back and lower your eyes. Do you have any questions?”

“No, sir,” she breathed.

“One last thing—if I direct you to my chair, it would be unwise to protest. Do I make myself clear?”

“Uh, yes, sir.”

Placing his finger under her chin, he tilted up her head and kissed her. It was a warm, gentle, lingering kiss, a kiss that brought goosebumps to life under her finery, and sent a wash of moisture between her legs.

“Edward,” she whispered as he pulled back.

“Yes?” he murmured.

“My heart, it is racing.”

“Do you still wish to take your bath?”

“No, yes, no, yes. Yes, I do, I want to, uh, present myself to you.”

“How charming,” he sighed. “You are a divine creature. See, you need your room already, and there will be other times you will want your privacy. You must have room for your many clothes, and Helen must have a place in which to dress you.”

“Oh, yes, I hadn’t thought about that. Um, I don’t want anyone to see me as I come back here. I know it’s just the room next door, but still.”

“Just as in your uncle’s house, there’s a call cord by the fireplace. That will bring Helen up, and once she has helped you undress and has filled your tub, you tell her she’s to go downstairs and remain there. The staff will not come above stairs unless I ring for them. This is a house just like any other. The servants know their place. You don’t have to worry.”

“Oh, that’s a relief, thank you, Edward.”

“Off with you then, but don’t keep me waiting too long.”

“I won’t, sir,” she promised, rising to her feet.

Edward watched her move from the room, then stood up, stretched, and ambled across to the window. Gazing out at the street below, he thought about the many responsibilities facing his new wife. She had much to learn in the weeks and months ahead. She would be the lady of the house, both in his modest London home and his country estate. It wasn’t a small task, and she had no experience.

His relatives had raised their eyebrows in bewilderment when he’d informed them of his decision to marry Lady Charlotte Winthrop. She was certainly from an appropriate family. The earl of Cheltenham was revered among his peers, and Lady Charlotte, being an only child, came with an impressive fortune left in trust by her father, but she was considered frivolous and flighty, and too young and inexperienced for a man such as Lord Pemberly III. Objections had been raised, and though he was cognizant of their concerns, he was unmoved. Lady Charlotte was the bride for him, and he was prepared to personally undertake the training necessary to make her an accomplished mistress of their home.

“I should freshen up myself,” he mumbled, idly rubbing his hungry cock.

Walking across the colorful Persian rugs gracing the dark wood floor, he entered his bathroom and slowly stripped off his clothes. A small smile crossed his lips as he placed them neatly on the chair Reese had left expressly for the purpose. Edward had discreetly enjoyed the company of many ladies over the years, and had learned how to efficiently undress without help from his trusted valet.

Stepping into his shower, he pulled the curtain into place and turned on the taps, standing aside as he waited for the water to become warm. The needle shower was a recent innovation, and offered narrow outlets that squirted water across the entire body from several angles. It was invigorating as well as cleansing, and as he moved into the spray, it occurred to him that might be fun to share the unique shower with Charlotte. As the water splattered over him, he soaped himself vigorously, and his mind switched gears, focusing on what was about to happen with his bride.

It was nearing dusk, and he wanted to turn his new wife’s bottom a bright shade of red, then gently, but determinedly, introduce her to his manhood. He assumed they would cuddle and indulge in a short nap, then, if they still had the energy, he would take her to the Criterion for dinner.

Rinsing off the copious suds from the Pears soap, he dried off, and wrapping himself in a silk robe, he returned to his bedroom. Deciding to close the drapes, he blocked out most of the brightness of the waning sun, leaving a small opening to offer just the right amount of light to give the room an intimate, romantic feel, then stretched out on his bed. As he laid back, he pondered how best to spank his beautiful Charlotte. It was certainly comfortable where he was, and he could prop himself against the headboard and have her lie across his lap.

“Yes,” he muttered, “then we will already be on the bed.”

A sudden thought struck him, and climbing off, he rolled back the expensive satin cover to expose the white sheets beneath, then hurried into the bathroom to retrieve a towel. There could be a bloodstain from the taking of her maidenhead, and it would protect the sheets and mattress. Laying it in place, he settled back down, and it was only a moment later that the door opened and like an elegant swan on a calm lake, Charlotte glided into the room.

Having agonized over her choice of lingerie, Charlotte studied his face for any reaction as she moved slowly towards him. He was scrutinizing her, but he was smiling, and she felt nothing but approval as she neared. The long white silk gown was joined by satin ribbons down the bodice, and the fabric floated softly around her body. She had taken the bold step of remaining naked underneath, and the feel of the silky material, and the thrilling apprehension of what was about to happen, was making her nipples harden to life.

“You look stunning,” he purred, moving off the bed to greet her. “What a lovely gown. I’ve never seen anything quite like it.”

“I hope not,” she twinkled.

“You are so cheeky,” he grinned.

“It’s very modern,” she murmured. “I wasn’t sure.”

“It’s perfect,” he whispered, lowering his lips to her ear, “and you look perfect in it, but I suspect you’ll look even more perfect when I take it off.”

“Edward,” she breathed, “the things you say.”

“First, however, I must spank you, and there will be no argument unless you want me to spank you very hard indeed.”

“No, sir, no argument,” she whispered.

His fingers wrapped around hers, and as he began to lead her forward, she discovered she was unable to breathe, and her mouth was falling inexplicably dry.

Guiding her towards his bed, Edward could sense her nervous excitement. It sent a surge of energy through his loins, and as he approached he had a sudden change of plan. He did not climb on top of the mattress to lean against the headboard, but settled himself on the edge of it instead.

“Bend over the bed next to me,” he said warmly.

“Oh, sir,” she bleated, “must I? Can you not hold me and kiss me first?”

“Didn’t you just proclaim there would be no argument?”

“Sorry, sir.”

“I suspect arguing might be a habit, Charlotte. Never fear, it will be habit soon broken,” he remarked firmly.

“Yes, sir, I, uh… I’m not sure what to say,” she stammered.

“Of course I will hold you and kiss you, but we must start our married life the right way.”

“Are all brides spanked before…?”

“I am not concerned with all brides,” he said, interrupting her with a smile. “I’m concerned with only one bride, mine. You have been without proper authority for far too long, and you must have a clear understanding of your place.”

“But I have a clear understanding.”

“My goodness. There you go again. The very fact that you continue to argue even after you just stated that you wouldn’t, tells me you do not.”

“I’m sorry, sir. Perhaps you’re right,” she sighed. “Perhaps it is a habit.”

“You’re forgiven, Charlotte. I expect you to be a good and obedient wife, but I realize that’s going to take some time. No doubt I’ll have to smack your bottom often to achieve that goal. How often will be entirely up to you. Now do as I say, and lie over the mattress next to me.”

Resignedly, Charlotte stepped forward and stretched across the bed. In spite of her protests and misgivings, a thrill rippled through her as she settled, and when he leaned over and began to raise the hem of her gown, she couldn’t suppress a low, deep moan.

“How elegant your legs are,” Edward murmured as he continued to glide the silk to the backs of her knees. “Narrow ankles, and nicely developed calves. Most pleasing to the eye.”

“Thank you, sir.”

“I didn’t have the opportunity to fully study them when I spanked you in the forest, and now I see such divinely milky-white skin.”

Charlotte felt her face burn, but she was as excited as she was embarrassed, and as he smoothed his hand over the back of her thighs, she felt a fresh shudder of pleasure. He was lifting her gown ever higher, and suddenly she felt the cool air whisper over her bottom. He could see her, all of her.

“Such beauty,” he purred, “and there remains a pale pink blush from earlier today. Exquisite, simply exquisite,” he crooned, moving his hand over her full moons, “but that pink skin must be spanked until red. I will be pausing to speak to you, to outline my rules and expectations. How are you feeling? Do you like my hand roaming over you?”

“Yes, sir, but it’s a bit scary.”

“Are you worried about my hot hand spanking you again?”

“Yes, sir.”

“It is good that you feel that way. It is necessary that you understand I will not hesitate to discipline you should you need it, but before I begin, I wish to touch your sweet womanhood. Spread your legs for me, show yourself to me.”

“Oh, sir,” she breathed, “that you ask such a thing.”

“I shall be asking much more, sweet wife. This will soon be great pleasure. You do know that, don’t you?”

“Yes, sir, I do, but it is still scary.”

“Separate them, do it now.”

Biting her lower lip, she shuffled her feet apart. Her eyes had been closed, and opening them, she peered over her shoulder to study him. He was leaning forward, staring at her womanly charms. A strange rush flooded her sex, and she felt almost mesmerized as she watched his hand move towards her.

“Yes,” he muttered, touching between her lips. “Wonderfully wet, just as I knew it would be.”

“Ooh, sir,” she mewled, squeezing her eyes shut and burying her face in the mattress.

“Take a deep breath and enjoy the feel of my fingers,” he purred. “Relax. You do love me petting you here, don’t you? Doesn’t it feel rather wonderful?”

“Yes, sir,” she whispered. “It does, very.”

She wasn’t lying, it did feel wonderful, much more wonderful than she’d thought it could, or would.

“When I’ve finished spanking you, I shall examine you even more closely, then gently probe,” he murmured, sliding his fingers deeper into her slit. “The spanking will hurt, but it will also cause a fire to burn inside you, a fire that will make you crave my attention.”

“It will?” she stammered. I know it will. I just don’t know why.

“Yes, I promise you, and now it’s time. Do your best not to kick out, and if you need to wail, please do so into the mattress. Understood?”

“Yes, sir.”

“Good. We shall begin.”

That’s all until next week’s installment! If you’re aching to finish right now, though, just click below and buy the book!

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