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Friday, July 8, 2016

Little Rituals

Title: Little Rituals
Characters:  Jerome/Saul
Written by: Dizzy

Slowly waking up, Jerome sighed and guessed that it was three in the morning.  Propping himself up on one elbow, he turned on the bedside lamp.  Picking up his watch, he saw that he was only ten minutes off.  The hands of his wristwatch showed 2:50. Swinging his legs out of bed, he put his robe on and started to leave the bedroom.  Before he reached the door, Jerome did an about face.  Walking back over to the bed, he opened the bottom drawer of his night stand.  This was a little ritual he and Saul had completed many times before.  He knew what tools were needed.  With a small wooden paddle in his hand, Jerome walked out of the bedroom.

Jerome knew his brat would be in the study.  He wasn't disappointed when he looked in the room and saw Saul.  Leaning against the doorframe, he watched his brat quietly.  The small desktop lamp created a contrast of light and shadows.  Highlighted in its beam, was Saul's face. Jerome let a small smile slip onto his lips.  After so many years, his heart still beat a little faster when he saw his Saul.  They both may have more lines on their faces, more salt than pepper in their hair, and their shoulders might stoop a bit, but their love had only strengthened.  Adjusting himself under his robe, he admitted that their sexual attraction had also strengthened.  Thirty years together, and this small, thin professor still excited him.

"Come on, think!" Saul muttered. 

When Saul started typing furiously on his laptop, Jerome stepped forward.  "Ahem. I'm sure a smart, highly educated man such as yourself knows what time it is.  So I won't insult either one of us by asking if you know what time it is. I also won't ask you why you are up.  I will tell you once, just once, to shut down the computer and get. To. Bed."

Not startled at all, Saul snapped back, "Give me a minute."

"The only minute I'm giving you is to shut that computer down," Jerome commanded.

"I said in. A. Minute!!"

Jerome had known when he got the paddle, that it would be used.  Saul's snarky reply just confirmed it.  "You have your minute."

Jerome took the minute he'd granted Saul to calmly walked over to the corner.  Picking up the wooden chair that was there, he turned and set it back down.  As both of them had gotten older, some concessions to age had to be made.  The chair was one.  Instead of standing in the corner, Saul now sat.  The need for discipline hadn't diminished over the years, but the way discipline was mete out had changed.  The chair was for Saul to sit in, but played double duty.   At this point, it would be used for Saul to go over his lap.

"Saul.  Come here," Jerome stated firmly.  When Saul looked over the screen of his laptop, Jerome said, "We do this every time you have a new seminar at the resort or a new class you are teaching. Let me settle you, and we'll finish the night in bed."

Jerome was patient as Saul closed his laptop and stacked some papers.  He knew that his husband wasn't procrastinating or delaying the spanking.  Just that Saul couldn't leave his desk in disarray.  Jerome understood the quirks of his love.

When the desk was in order, Saul walked toward him.  Jerome gave him a soft smile.  He didn't know how Saul could walk so calmly to the execution of his backside.  But from the very beginning, the very first spanking, Saul had always faced his discipline head on. 

Once he was standing in front of him, Jerome pulled down Saul's pajama pants.  Saul had very set ideas of propriety and one of them was that he wore pajamas to bed.  No underwear, but pajama pants and top.  As soon as the pants were around his knees, Jerome gave a tug on Saul's hand.  And Saul tumbled over his lap.

Jerome didn't plan on this being a harsh or long spanking, so he didn't start with his hand.  He brought the paddle down squarely on the bare cheeks.  "We have a set time for work.  It has not changed.  We've had the same schedule for years.  It is not at three in the morning.  And never will be."

Five sentences punctuated at the end with a swat from the paddle.  Jerome stilled and observed his boy.   Shoulders were still tense and up around his ears.  A few more swats were needed.

"You are good at what you do.  But you are more likely to make mistakes when you are tired.  You are tired at three in the morning.  Small mistakes that upset you.  You can start again in the morning." 

Five more sentences; five more swats with the paddle.  Finally, Saul's body showed signs of less tension.  The only tension left was in anticipation of more spanks. 

"It has to be just right.  I use the word discipline too much. I can't find a different word," Saul said abruptly, a slight catch to in his voice.  The short paddling wasn't harsh, but it still hurt.

"Saul," Jerome sighed softly.  Then grabbed Saul when he tried to turn around.  His boy had almost fallen off his lap. 

"You know how important it is to get it just right!  Too many people see abuse where there's only discipline," Saul cried out.

"You can't dictate what people will think.  You can only show them what you know."

"I use the word discipline too many times.  And I can't find a synonym that reflects the same meaning!  You know as well as I do that the words we speak or write can have a profound effect on someone."

Jerome looked at the distraught man before him.  God, he loved him so.  His quirks.  His obsessing.  Everything about the man brought joy to his heart.  Jerome then schooled his features to sternness.  "Yes, I do know.  However, I'll say it again. You can't dictate what people will think.  Right now, you are exhausted.  You will not find the right word when your eyes are crossed due to lack of sleep.  And, if you'd only ask, I would help you."

Trying to avoid eye contact, Saul bent down and with a wince pulled his pants up over his red backside.  He sighed in resignation.  "I know.  I know you'll help me if I ask. I know that the admin at the resort will be pleased.  I don't know why I do this!"

Standing up, Jerome took him in his arms.  Giving Saul a hard hug and a gentle kiss, he said, "It's our little ritual.  Something you've been doing all your life.  And something I've been helping you through for the last thirty years."

With a self-depreciating smile, Saul asked, "Can we change it up a bit?  Maybe get rid of that damn paddle?"

"Nope.  Rituals are very important to you. And you are very important to me.  The most important person to me.  I'd never let you down."

Jerome knew that Saul understood completely when he gave him a genuine smile.  "Come on, boy.  Let's end this as we always have.  In bed."

A bit of passion and a few hours sleep, and Jerome knew they'd work together to finish the presentation.  It's what they did.  Together.


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