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Chapter One: The Bride of Fire

The Isle of Barragowan is dominated by the castle, which stands high upon a hill overlooking the cool blue waters of the loch and the foaming waters of the sea beyond. The castle had been owned by the God-fearing MacKechnie family for centuries.

            On one side of the loch was a folly, built by the Laird, Jeremiah Hosea MacKechnie, during the 18th Century, to resemble a castle. Folly Castle had stood empty, alone and neglected for many years, until the present owners, tired of living in a cold and dreary castle, had the folly renovated, updated and modernized, to create four comfortable dwellings inhabited by the four MacKechnie brothers, each one occupying a wing of the converted folly.

            The old castle with its priceless store of treasures was then handed to the National Trust for tourists from all countries to visit and enjoy at their leisure.

            Barragowan was a castle of many moods. On a dull, grey day when the wind screamed its fury around the ancient walls and the rain lashed its coral colored stone, it stood silent and moody, glowering forbiddingly at the village, which lay on the opposite side of the loch.

            On a day, which was sunny and warm, the mood of the castle changed and became benevolent and peaceful, smiling serenely upon the loch and the village.

            It was on one such day that MacDaell, returning from fishing on the loch narrowed his eyes as he saw Jack Dawes skulking through the trees. What was the fellow up to? MacDaell didn’t trust him. Not one little bit! But there was no use speaking to Zak MacKechnie about it. MacKechnie would just laugh at him telling him that Jack was a harmless simpleton who wouldn’t hurt a fly. No, MacDaell would have to keep an eye on him himself. And if the fellow was up to no good, well, he would find out about it or his name wasn’t Alastair Angus MacDaell!

            Zakeriah Josiah MacKechnie’s name was deceptive. On hearing it, one pictured an elderly gentleman, with ruddy cheeks, long silver hair and eyes, which were rheumy with age; an ancient philosopher, to whom younger members of the community would turn for advice in times of trouble or uncertainty.

            On the contrary, Zakeriah was neither ancient nor particularly philosophical. He did not have ruddy cheeks and silver hair and his eyes were definitely not rheumy. He was a tall, well-built man of twenty-five, with broad shoulders and powerful arms. His handsome features exuded confidence and self-assurance, eyes as blue as a crystal loch, thick jet-black hair and a humorous mouth which could split into a wide smile, revealing strong white teeth, completed the picture.  In short, Zakeriah Josiah, in spite of his name, was a catch in any woman’s language and he could have had just about any woman that he wanted, even without his considerable wealth.

            The woman that he wanted was Julia Ramsey, daughter of Euan Ramsey, a wealthy and powerful businessman, highly successful and well respected in the business world. Julia, with her flashing green eyes and avalanches of flame red hair, had caught his eye when Zak had been doing business with her father. Rich, spoilt, indulged and yet also strangely vulnerable, she had captured his heart and taken it prisoner.

            The lovely Julia both captivated and tantalized him unbearably. Many was the time he had eyed her alluring little bottom, covered as it was by skin tight jeans and had fantasized pleasurably about seeing it naked and helpless, while he first caressed and rubbed its rounded contours and then smacked it long and hard until its creamy whiteness had turned a fiery red. How he would enjoy taming this little tigress! He would never be harsh, of course, that was not the way that Zakeriah MacKechnie worked. But he would be firm and when it came to discipline, unyielding.

            In the beginning Julia had led Zak a fine old dance and at times had nearly driven him crazy with her teasing and flirtatious manner. She had blatantly flaunted her sexuality, fluttering her eyes beguilingly at the stable hand, purring kittenishly at the pizza delivery man, gazing coquettishly at the church bishop, leaning seductively towards the bank manager and laughing delightedly when she saw Zak’s mouth set in a hard, disapproving line. Such behavior would be dealt with if and when she ever became his wife!

            In time, Julia had agreed to marry him, and how beautiful she had looked on their wedding day in her dazzlingly white wedding dress, which had been embroidered with pearls and crystals. Nothing but the best for the daughter of Euan Ramsey! All her life Julia had been given everything she could ever have wanted; everything except for the one thing that she wanted the most, the love and attention of her father. Euan Ramsay had been far too busy making money to have much time for his motherless little daughter. Consequently, Julia had grown up spoilt and indulged, rich materially beyond the dreams of most young girls, but emotionally neglected and deprived, craving male attention and flirting outrageously in order to get it.

            Zak had taken his new bride to an exotic island for their honeymoon; a romantic place designed for newly weds to sample the delights of marriage in peace and seclusion. The plush, luxurious hotels, the tall palm trees and the pristine white beaches with warm temperate water to bathe in, were a honeymooner’s dream!

            Zakeriah arrived at the hotel feeling somewhat tired and jaded. He has slept poorly the last few nights before the wedding and the flight had been long and tiring. A short forty winks before he performed his husbandly duties was surely in order? After which he would be refreshed and ready to pleasure his bride to her heart’s content. He lay on the bed and drifted off into a pleasant relaxing sleep while Julia headed off to the little village to see what treasures she could gather from the local shop.

            After a happy hour’s shopping, she headed back to the hotel room to find her newly wedded husband fast asleep, his muscular chest bare, his lower half covered by a pair of silk boxer shorts. Half amused and half annoyed, she began by tickling his bare feet. With a grunt, Zak pulled his feet up and continued to sleep, snoring gently with his mouth open.       Julia was tempted to pop something into his mouth but then thought better of it. Zak had mentioned something about spankings when they were married. He was joking, of course! But looking at the size of his hands, Julia decided that it wasn’t worth the risk.            Bored, she looked around the room and her eye fell on the dreamcatcher she had bought that morning. Plucking one of the feathers, she began to gently tickle his face. Mumbling something that sounded like Mpppffffmmmrrrmm, Zak turned on his side and pulled the pillow over his face. After a few seconds, his deep even breathing resumed which told her that he was still fast asleep.

            Julia did not like to be ignored. She wanted her husband’s attention and she wanted it now! She wanted him to make love to her, to claim her, to become one with her. She stripped off all her clothing and laid stark naked next to him, her bare breasts against his back. Gently she began to nibble his ear. He covered his ear with his hand and continued to sleep. Nothing she could do would rouse him. Frustrated she walked through to the sitting room area of their hotel suite. It had large windows with magnificent views of the ocean.

            Julia stood looking out of the window and noticed a young man walking by on the pavement below. She giggled as he glanced up and registered shocked surprise at seeing a stark naked woman framed in the window. She waved to him and he waved back, deciding to sit on a nearby bench and see what this delightfully naked nymph would do next. Julia turned her back and wiggled her bare bottom at him, glancing seductively over her shoulder. Within minutes a crowd of men, who couldn’t believe their luck, had gathered, delighted by the unexpected show.

            Julia was having so much fun, that she failed to notice the knock at the door. It seemed that the hotel manager, noticing the commotion outside, had gone to investigate. What he saw had him marching hastily back into the hotel and up the stairs to ask that Madame please desist from such behavior.

            A sleepy Zak, eventually roused by the persistent knocking on the door, was informed that there was a naked woman whose antics from this very suite were causing mayhem in the street below and would Monsieur please take care of the matter? Monsieur assured him that indeed he would take care of it without delay.

            So it was that Julia found herself faced with a grim-faced husband, wearing only his boxer shorts, who was clearly not impressed. “Just WHAT do you think you are doing?” he demanded.

            She pouted her lips seductively at him, continuing to wiggle her very sexy bottom much to the delight of the bunch of gawking voyeurs on the street below, who cheered and clapped. She waved to them laughing merrily as she was pulled away from the window by her outraged husband.

            “You need to be taught a lesson, young lady,” he muttered. “And the time is right now!”

            Before she knew what was happening, he had sat on the bed and pulled her across his lap, her naked bottom perfectly positioned to be spanked. She wriggled and fought like a wild cat, but it was no use. He had her in a vice like grip that she could not escape.

            He waited until her struggles subsided and then rested his hand on her rounded bottom. Gently he began to rub the smooth soft skin and as he rubbed he spoke calmly, quietly. “Julia, do you remember a little discussion we had before we got married?” he asked still rubbing her soft bottom gently.

            “What discussion?” she asked, trying to turn round and look at him. It was difficult to have a sensible conversation lying with her bare bottom fully exposed and totally at the mercy of her new husband.

            Using his other hand he held her firmly in the small of her back, all the time rubbing, caressing, stroking. “The little talk we had about your flirting and flaunting yourself before other men. Do you remember now?”

            The gentle rubbing continued. There was something very arousing about lying across one’s husband’s lap and having one’s bare bottom rubbed. She agreed that she did remember something like that. Not all the details, of course, but yes, she did have a vague memory…

            “What did I say I would do if you behaved like that after we were married?”

            “Well, uhmmm, I don’t remember,” she said slightly alarmed now. “What did you say you would do?”

            “I said that I would spank you, Julia. Don’t tell me you’ve forgotten that already!”

            Now she was really alarmed and began to struggle again. “You can’t be serious!” she said fighting to free herself from his grip of iron.

            “Oh, but I am serious,” he assured her. “In fact I have never been more serious in my life!”

            “You can’t do that!” she gasped still struggling valiantly to get free. “I’ll tell my father. He’ll kill you if you lay one finger on me!”

            He laughed. “You no longer live under your father’s rules, Julia. You live under mine. And my rule is that that kind of behavior will earn you a good spanking. Now lie still or it will be worse.”

            “I will not lie still,” she screamed. “If you think I am going to just lie here and let you spank me, you must be insane!”

            He had stopped rubbing now but his hand still rested on her bottom. “Let me tell you how this is going to work,” he said. “Naughty girls get their bottoms smacked. When you stop fighting and you lie still, your bottom is going to be smacked. I am going to start timing you. Every minute that you struggle and fight, will be an extra minute that you are spanked. If you fight for two minutes, you bottom will be smacked for an extra two minutes and so it will go on. Do you get the picture?”

            She lay still now, unable to believe this was happening.

            “Are you ready for your spanking?” he asked, his large hand still covering her bottom.

            She didn’t answer.

            “Julia! Are you ready for your spanking?”

            Something in his tone made her realize it was useless to resist and foolish not to answer. “Yes,” she muttered sulkily.

            His hand rose and fell onto her bottom with a resounding crack and she gave a yelp of shock and pain. The sound of smacking filled the room as his hand rose and fell, rose and fell. She gasped and cried out, trying to put her hand back to protect her sore bottom. Calmly he took her arm and bent it gently across her back holding it firmly in place. Her bare, unprotected bottom was smacked soundly, first on the one cheek and then on the other then in the middle. Smack! Smack! Smack! And all the while she could feel his erection, straining against the silk of his boxer shorts. Swine! He was enjoying this! Her bottom went from creamy white to pink and finally to a rosy red.

            After about thirty smacks he stopped and rested his hand on the warm flesh. “Have you had enough now?” he asked.

            “You creep!” she hissed at him through her tears.

            “Obviously not,” he said calmly and the smacking resumed.

            “Yes! Yes! I’ve had enough,” she begged. “Please! Stop!”

            After another ten very hard swats, he stopped. “Are you going to behave yourself?” he asked his hand poised threateningly above the rosy cheeks.

            “Yes,” she said with a little gulp and tried to get up.

            “Not yet,” he said firmly, his left hand pushed into the small of her back, holding her down and preventing her from escaping. He began to massage her stinging buttocks with a soothing cream. His desire for his beautiful bride heightened and after administering a sound and well-deserved spanking, he made sweet and tender love to her as only a husband could.

            Afterwards she rested in his arms, absorbing the smell of him, the taste of him, the feel of him. Still tired out, he soon fell asleep and she listened to his rhythmic breathing. She lay against him, completely relaxed, surrendered and submissive.

            She couldn’t even begin to understand her confused feelings and emotions. He had just given her a very hard spanking from which her bottom was still tingling. Then he had made the most passionate, and gentle love to her and she had felt years of accumulated anger, frustration and pain evaporate. She should have been furious at his high handed treatment of her, but strangely enough, she wasn’t. What she did feel, perhaps for the very first time in her life, was loved.

            Her father had spoilt her, but never cared about her. He had punished her by withholding his love and affection, but he had never disciplined her. And as she lay next to the man that she had promised to love, cherish and obey, the man that she had promised to submit to, she finally understood the difference between punishment and discipline.

            This man would love her until the day he died. He had promised to do that and he would keep his word. He would also spank her soundly if she misbehaved. That too, had been promised, and that too, was a promise he would most certainly keep. That he would have cause to spank her again in the future, she did not doubt. And even as she lay in his arms, she knew that she would probably provoke him into it; deliberately misbehave in order to feel the sting of his hand on her bottom again. And she knew she would do that until such time as all the feelings of neglect and worthlessness stemming from her childhood were expunged from her life. But for the moment she felt loved, protected and safe.

            She closed her eyes and went to sleep.

            In the morning she awakened to see him lying on his side, his head propped up by his hand, watching her. An amused smile was playing about his lips as he looked at her naked bottom, which still bore some of the evidence of yesterday’s spanking. The overall redness had faded but a few clear hand marks were still visible on the soft flesh. The sight of his hand branded on her bottom, staking his claim to her, made him feel aroused, protective and loving. He leant across and kissed her gently, his hands cupping her tender bottom and squeezing gently.

            “You’re a brute,” she said but without rancor.

            “Am I?” he murmured, kissing her neck. “But you love this brute?”

            She sighed with pleasure, “Yes,” she said with a little moan. “Yes! I love this brute!”

            “Even when he spanks you?”

            “Yes,” she agreed. “Even when he spanks me. Just as long as he loves me.”

            “Oh, he loves you,” he assured her. “He’s crazy, mad in love with you!” As he held her in his arms he marveled at the depth of feelings that he had for this soft, sweet-smelling woman who had consented to become his wife.

            When, at last they got out of bed, and he looked at her perfect posterior with the marks of his hand on it, he again felt the stirrings of desire for her. But she had lessons to learn. He had to teach his wife to be obedient and submissive. And the time to start was right now.

            He sat on the edge of the bed and called to her. “Come over here, baby!” She walked across to him trustingly. He took her arm. “Bend over my lap!” he said.

            She drew back in shock. “Why? What have I done?”

            “Nothing,” he said. “Just bend over my lap.”

            “But I don’t want to!” she said trying to pull away from him.

            “Of course, you don’t,” he said holding her wrist in a grip from which she could not escape. “But bend over, anyway!”

            “No!” she said struggling to get away. “No! You are not going to spank me again. I haven’t done anything!” she sounded like she was going to cry.

            “Julia!” he said sternly. “Bend over! Now! Or else!” She looked at him beseechingly for a few minutes and he had to harden his heart. She had to learn to trust him. But before she could learn to trust him, she had to learn to obey him. He had to do this.

            Reluctantly she bent over and tensed as she waited to feel the pain of his hand on her bottom again.”

            “Good girl!” he said as he traced the outline of the marks that his hand had made. “You obeyed. You didn’t want to, but you did it because I asked you to. Did you think you were going to get another spanking?”

            “Yes,” she admitted feeling vulnerable lying across his lap with her bare bottom at his mercy.

            “You would have gotten another one if I had had to force you over,” he said. “If ever I tell you to bend over, you had better do it whether you think you deserve it or not! Any argument or resistance will earn you a spanking that will keep you standing for a week! You have to learn to trust me and to obey me. Do you trust me, Julia?”

            “Yes,” she said instantly. “Yes, I do trust you. I trust you to love me, to protect me and to spank me when I need it.”

            “And will you obey me, like you promised when we took our vows yesterday?”

            “Yes,” she said a little hesitantly. “At least I will try to.”

            “Good girl,” he said again patting her bottom playfully. “Now, let’s get dressed and go out and enjoy ourselves before the day is over.”

            As Julia had realized on the first morning of her marriage, the day would come when she would crave the feel of Zak’s hand on her bottom again. The spankings were painful while they were happening, but the feelings of warmth and security afterwards made it worth it. Certainly he didn’t spare her and he smacked her long and hard leaving her tender bottom very red and very sore.

            For her part, she found her lifetime habit of flirting, which she had developed to compensate for her father’s neglect, a very difficult one to break. Furthermore, she had also worked out that the surest way to earn herself the spankings she craved, was to flirt openly with other men.

            Things came to a head one night when they had gone to a party in the village. Julia had had rather too much to drink and was more flirtatious than usual. In a rage, Zak punched the fellow who was the object of his wife’s attention and with a grim face he grabbed her by the arm and marched her out to the car. Without a word, he threw her into the passenger seat, slammed the door, started the engine and roared off home.

            “Go to the study!” he ordered. “Take your clothes off and bend over the armrest of the sofa. If you are not ready for me when I come in, you are going to be sorry!”

            The effects of the alcohol were starting to wear off and her dutch courage was deserting her. She had really made him mad this time! Not daring to disobey she removed her clothing and bent over the armrest, her bottom ready and waiting for the spanking that was to come. She was starting to feel distinctly alarmed. This was not following the normal pattern. Normally she would be lying over his lap, the physical contact with him comforting even as the palm of his hand connected painfully with her bottom. And how long was he going to make her wait for the spanking anyhow? It felt like hours that she lay with her bottom exposed and ready to be smacked, although, it was in fact, no longer than about five minutes.           When he came into the room he was still white faced and angry. She looked fearfully at the old fashioned ruler he carried in his hand. This was also different. He had always spanked her with his hand before. There was a sharp crack and pain seared across her bottom as the hard wood connected cruelly with her soft flesh. With a scream of agony she instinctively reached back to her bare, unprotected buttocks. He caught her hands and held them firmly out of the way. A second crack followed and she screamed again. She really couldn’t help it! Never would she have believed that a spanking could be so excruciatingly painful.

            He administered another ten strokes with the vicious ruler before flinging it violently to one side and continuing to smack her terribly sore bottom with the flat of his hand. She sobbed and wailed and begged for mercy, twisting and writhing to try and escape the punishing smacks, which rained down onto the bruised, purple flesh of her soft and tender bottom.

            “Please!” she wailed between her sobs. “Please! No more! I can’t take anymore!”

            Eventually he stopped and stood looking at her as she lay trembling on the sofa. Without a word he turned and walked out of the room. For several minutes she lay still, shocked and unable to believe what had just happened. This had been no ordinary spanking. This had been a thrashing!

            But even as her bottom throbbed with pain, she had to admit that she had deserved it. Why did she persist in flirting? He had asked her not to. He had told her that it upset him. He had spanked her on numerous occasions for the same offence and finally she had pushed him too far and he had snapped.

            What upset her more than anything was his silence and the fact that he had walked out and left her. Every other time that he had disciplined her, he had comforted her afterwards, rubbed her sore bottom, and made tender love to her. But this time he had walked away and she felt quite desolate. Shakily she got to her feet and crept upstairs to the bedroom. He was not there.

            Catching sight of her bottom in the mirror, she gasped. It was a mass of red and purple welts. She would definitely not be sitting on it for some time to come! She climbed stiffly into bed and lay gingerly on her side. It was too sore to lie on her back. At some point she drifted off into a restless sleep, punctuated by dreams of a troubled little girl who had longed for the love of her father. A little girl who had learnt that she could use her beauty and her feminine guile to gain the male attention she so desperately craved. And in her dream she knew that it was time to let that wounded little girl go and to grow up. Or to risk losing everything.

            When she awakened in the morning it was to find that his side of the bed had not been slept in. Miserable, she got up and headed for the shower. Her bottom was still on fire.   She had finished showering when Zak came in looking as though he hadn’t slept. There were dark rings under his eyes and he looked bleak and miserable. She felt her heart wrench with shame at the realization that she was responsible for the pain in his eyes. She, by her foolish, childish behavior had caused this man that she loved more than life itself, to suffer. “I’m sorry,” she whispered.

            He nodded. “So am I.” he said.

            “I will never do that again,” she promised and tears began to run down her cheeks. “Never!”

            He smiled mirthlessly. “Don’t make me a promise that you might not be able to keep.”

            She shook her head. “No, I mean it. Last night taught me something.” She raised her chin and looked at him bravely. “It taught me that it’s time for me to stop behaving like the spoilt child I have always been. It’s time that I grew up.”

            Suddenly she was in his arms and he was kissing her hair and they were both crying. He turned her around and looked at her bottom. “I am not proud of myself for doing this to you,” he said. “I believe in spanking my wife, if she deserves it. But to have thrashed you like this is unforgivable.”

            “No! No!” she said shaking her head. “I deserved it. What I did was unforgivable. I pushed and pushed until you snapped. I provoked you. I always did. When you spanked me on our wedding night, I felt secure and loved. Flirting with other men was a way to get you to spank me. That’s why I did it!”

            He stared at her incredulously. “You wanted me to spank you?”

            “Yes,” she answered simply.

            He began to laugh helplessly. “Sweetie, if you want me to spank you, all you have to do is ask! I’ll spank you anytime you like. No problem. You don’t have to act up to get my attention!”

            “I know,” she said. “I know! And if my butt wasn’t so darn sore, I would ask for a spanking right now!”

            “And if your butt wasn’t so darn sore, I would give you one right now!” he said with a grin.

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