By: Cybergaki & Teri
The dark haired young man wearing a Zildjian t-shirt and ripped jeans listened attentively as his friend Jinx explained the horrors of animal testing, in between trying out pairs of drumsticks. Jinx was in PETA and while he didn't agree with everything PETA did, he thought they had a point when it came to killing animals for fur, and this sounded reasonable as well. Testing household chemicals and personal care products on animals was, well, wrong. He couldn't get the image out of his head of a rabbit with a cane and dark glasses, blinded so some skank like Paris Hilton could wear mascara. And it wasn't a legal requirement, just done so the company could cover their asses. So he agreed to go help Jinx hand out brochures, sold her a few pair of sticks, a couple of wire brushes and a practice pad. He toyed with his 'soul patch' as he watched her leave and an idea formed in the blender that served as his brain. He'd go make a cruelty check at Chez Leyland/Paige during his lunch break.
The young man had been blessed, or cursed if you will, with the unlikely name of Zaphod. His parents were both fans of Douglas Adam's Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, and had named their offsprings after characters from the books. He'd been named for Zaphod Beeblebrox, the eccentric President of the Galaxy, a favourite of his father's. His younger sister had fared somewhat better, having been named for Trillian. Zaphod figured it could have been worse; his parents could have been Tolkien fanatics. He could have been Frodo, Gimli or worse, Legolas. He shuddered.
Zaphod (or Zay) told Ewan he was off to lunch, and Ewan seemed to have heard. Whatever. Zaphod got in the van, a gas guzzler but needed in his line of work, and went home. Once there, he grabbed a large trash bag and headed first for the bathrooms. He started tossing anything from companies listed in the brochure or anything that looked suspicious. By the time he finished, the only things remaining were one lip balm and some essential oils. He was gonna need more bags.
He tossed cleaning products and kitchen products - disinfecting wipes, sprays and detergents. The only place left to purge was Paul's space, where all the catering food miracles happened. Should he? Well, Paul was always telling him to finish and see things through. So, he kinda felt obligated to check Paul's space, it being the last one. Paul would want it that way. He kept telling himself that as he continued to toss stuff into the bags. Once finished, he loaded the bags in the van. He'd take the dangerous stuff to the hazardous waste place, and the rest he'd stick in some convenient dumpster. Feeling very satisfied with his labours, he headed off
Paul drove his catering van into the spacious drive and parked as close to the re-modelled garage as possible. When he had started his catering business five years ago, he had converted the huge garage into a kitchen cum pantry for storage. It had worked well – the business kitchen had its own defined space and separate entrance and Paul was able to maintain that segregation from their home kitchen. Life was not all about work, Paul said, and there must be a clear line between work and play, no matter how enjoyable work was sometimes.
It had been a long afternoon, and they had tons of stuff to unload, but it had been a very successful function and Paul had had many compliments and referrals, so the mood was good.
Suzy, Paul’s younger sister, jumped out of the van, followed by Bunny, their catering assistant. Together, all three of them moved their serving trays and warming pans into the ultra-modern kitchen, stacking them at the wash area. Leftover food was placed in the industrial sized refrigerators. Unused utensils went back onto the stainless steel racks. The kitchen was precision-neat, the way Paul wanted it.
Suzy headed for the sinks, plugged one up and turned on the hot water. She looked around for the dish detergent. "Hey Paul, you are totally out of detergent. Didn’t we have a half bottle here ... oh never mind. Bunny, grab me one from the store please?"
Paul had already started towards the connecting door into the house, looking for Zay. Usually Zay would have come to welcome them home and to see if there were any enticing leftovers to pick from.
"Zay?" Paul called out.
Not seeing his partner anywhere, Paul disappeared into the downstairs bathroom to relieve himself. After he had zipped himself up, he went to the sink to wash his hands. Strange ... he looked around for the hand wash, a frown on his forehead. Something was not quite right, but he could not put his finger on it. He quickly dried his hands then came out, calling out more loudly.
"Zay honey, where are you?"
And where was Zay? Not at the grocery store, as he should have been. No, he was off to make an emergency delivery of a new kick pedal. He'd been on his way, he'd had every intention of replacing the products he'd tossed, but he'd gotten a call on his cell phone from Jinx. Her band, The Bangs, had a gig and something was wrong with the kick pedal for her bass drum. That was a priority, so Zay was off across town to deliver a new one. It's what you did when you were the store's only 'drum guy'. This created a kink in his plans, which were to have everything replaced before Paul was home. Paulie would understand, he was certain. Well, not 100% certain, maybe 50%. He thought a bit more. Make that 30%.
“What do you mean they’re all gone?” Suzy demanded, glaring at Bunny. “LOOK again!”
Bunny was about to retort when Paul strode back into the catering kitchen, saying, “I can’t find Zay anywhere. And there’s something strange going on here ...” He glanced at Bunny. “What?”
Bunny shrugged. “All the washing detergent is gone. I could have sworn we had at least a half dozen bottles still. And that woman there thinks I am blind!”
Paul frowned. He went to look for himself and stared at the empty space on his neat shelves which had once housed an interesting collection of industrial cleaners and sprays. “What the ...” he trailed off.
Suzy rinsed off her hands and declared. “Well, if there’s no detergent, there’s no point to stick around. I’m off! And when that hell-born brat of yours get home, HE can do the washing up. I’m outta here, brother! Coming Bunny?”
Zay called Ewan to let him know he was going home after he took care of Jinx's emergency. Not that anyone would care or even notice, unless a customer came in needing something drum related. It was a much laid back place, but the staff knew their stuff, which is all the owner cared about.
He hung around for the sound check, helped make some adjustments to Jinx's temperamental high hat stand and had a beer. Paul would surely have made it home by now, noticed the lack of personal care and cleaning products, and gone for more. So no need to do that. He'd tuned his phone off, and he noticed he had a message waiting from Paul. He mentally flipped a coin - tails he checked the message, heads he didn't. It came up heads. If Paul was angry, he'd rather delay knowing it anyway.
Finally he said his goodbyes and headed home.
After unsuccessfully trying to reach his brat on his cell phone, Paul decided to take a shower. He was looking forward to it. He quickly stripped off and stepped into the shower stall, letting the strong warm spray massage his body. He reached for the shampoo, groped around for it, and then opened his eyes against the water spray.
Paul groaned as he suddenly made the connection. Damn it! He had taken ALL the cleaning, washing, bleaching items away, hadn’t he? Must be some kind of mad experiment or cause yet again. Paul’s palm itched.
Zay pulled into the drive. No fuming Paul standing in the doorway. That was good. He checked Paul's catering kitchen. No one there and lots of dirty dishes. That was not so good. He had a pretty good idea of who would be doing them, once there were cleaning supplies again.
He went into the house proper and heard the shower running. Evidence so far would seem to point to the fact that Paul had not yet gone to the store to replace the tossed items. So what was he doing in the shower? Paul was, well to be kind, a Nazi of Cleanliness, and it was hard to picture him settling for a hosing off in the shower.
Zay's one consoling thought was that Paulie did have a sense of humour, it was just hidden. Maybe he would think the whole thing was funny, and leave it at that.
Paul was drying himself off, muttering softly to himself, when he heard the bedroom door open. He peered out of the en suite, saw the door cautiously shutting, and called out in his deep baritone voice. “Hold it right there, young man!”
*Shit* Zay said to himself as he stopped. Caught. Paul was using what Zay called the 'command' voice . Dammit to hell and he'd been extra special quiet too. He was gonna have to work on that. Slowly he turned and went back in. his hands stuffed in the front pockets of his jeans, his teeth biting his lower lip.
Paul unhurriedly finished towelling his hair, wrapped the towel around his hips, and walked into the bedroom. He eyed Zay sternly as he headed to the chest to look for some underwear. He pulled those on, followed by a pair of sweats and turned to regard his partner with arms folded over his bare chest.
“Tell me sweetheart, would you happen to know why all the cleaning items in this house seems to be missing?”
Stern look. Check. Arms folded. Check. Brat in trouble. Check. Zay shuffled his feet and looked at the carpet. "Uhm..." he began, and then shuffled his feet again."Ok."
He took a deep breath.
He took a second breath.
He took a third breath.
There was a moment of absolute silence as Paul digested what Zay had just spewed forth. Then a frown gathered on Paul’s forehead as he grasped what his partner had just said. “What did you say?” The tone was incredulous.
Paul was usually an indulgent boyfriend; he loved Zay and loved to spoil him. They had about ten years difference between them and Paul found great enjoyment in pampering him and giving in to him in most things. Paul secretly loved to tease Zay and to see Zay’s reaction, which was usually very instantaneous and open.
There was, however, one thing that Paul was inflexible on, and that was his work space. He had clear rules about the invasion of his catering kitchen; and the rule was: DO NOT MESS WITH IT.
“Are you telling me you went into the catering kitchen and THREW out my stuff there?”
"Uhm.." Zay took a couple of steps backwards towards the door. This was NOT going well.
"Uhm...Yes? You're always telling me not to do a half ass job of things. And the catering kitchen is part of the household; it used to be our garage. So I had to, you see? And I planned to have everything replaced before you got home, but Jinx had an emergency, and I had to deliver a new kick-pedal for the bass drum and I stuck around for her sound check in case there were more problems. And by the time I got out of there, I knew you would be home and I figured you'd go to the store and so there was no reason for me to do that and so I just came back to the house."
“Oh I see all right. One little conversation with one insignificant member of the righteous protectionist group and suddenly you are on a mission? Well, do you see this?” Paul held up his palm. “This is also on a mission, and this mission is just about to start!”
Paul took two quick steps forward, swung Zay sideways and landed three smart swats on his bottom. “There!”
"OW! Very funny, Paul. And what Jinx said made sense, and I don't go along with everything she says, we still have meat in the house."
Paul rolled his eyes, unimpressed. “Count yourself lucky we do. Now, let me tell you exactly what you are going to do next! You are going right out to the stores and you are going to replace every one of the items you so happily threw out. Every single one, Zaphod, do you hear me? And when you come back, there is a matter of a little washing up that is waiting for you in the catering kitchen. Oh yes, don’t open those eyes at me! You earned it! Suzy has left and it’s only you and me in this house. And I am quite certain it won’t be me doing the washing up.”
Paul gave a wicked cackle of laughter.
Zay glared at his partner. "I'm not buying the same shit again, Paul, so forget that. I'm gonna get cruelty free products, they work just as well. So, if you have a problem with that, you can come with me and buy what you need for the catering kitchen. And I already figured out I would have to do the dishes, BY HAND, since your Cleanliness doesn't like dishwashers, except the human kind." Zay crossed his own arms.
Paul raised his eyebrows. “Well, I don’t really care what you buy this time round, sunshine. If you want to spend extra, and I mean a hell of a lot extra, on the same stuff you so recklessly threw out, that is fine with me. Just make sure everything is replaced or else ... But know that the next time I need to replace them, they are going to be the exact same brands that we had before, the very ones that you threw out, because those things have been tried and tested and they work. And besides I am running a business here, and there is such a thing as costing. And budgets!”
"Whatever." Zay had no intention of spending any of HIS money, he was gonna use the household account credit card. Of course, that meant there would be a reckoning at some point, but not until the next month. Besides the only cash he had on him right now was Jinx's payment for the new kick pedal, and that belonged to the music store. "If you want to go back to buying products that blind little bunnies, be my guest." He stomped out of the bedroom and down the stairs, then out the front door, slamming it hard behind him.
Paul was on the verge of going after the impetuous young man when he heard the front door slam, but the flash of skin in the bedroom mirror reminded him of his semi-nakedness, and he reached instead for a t-shirt. No point giving Mrs Lee next door the satisfaction of ogling his naked chest; that woman had been eyeing him since the day she moved in.
Zay had calmed down a bit by the time he reached the store, and he thought maybe slamming the front door had been a bit over the top. Maybe he should get a peace offering of a good bottle of wine, nice sharp cheddar and a loaf of that crusty French bread? He took care of that little chore, and then hit the personal care isle.
Sheesh, this cruelty free thing didn't come cheap. Tom's of Maine and Nature Gate seemed the most reasonably priced, so he grabbed a selection of products from both. Ok...they now had deodorant, body wash, toothpaste and shampoo. On to household cleaners. Ecover laundry detergent, Meyer's household cleaning supplies, all nicely lemon scented and a few products from Seventh Generation. Done. He manoeuvred his two carts into a checkout lane, and watched, with mounting panic as the clerk rang them up. Four hundred dollars. He'd spent four hundred dollars. Paul was gonna kill him.
He was still in a bit of a daze as he drove home. He unloaded the supplies for Paul's kitchen first, which had accounted for a lot of the expense, since he'd needed to buy the big sizes. Then he headed inside. He noticed that Paul was lounging on the living room sofa, watching one of his endless Travels and Living documentaries, he couldn't see what.
"I got a really nice bottle of wine, already chilled, if you'd like a glass. Just let me finish unloading this stuff."
Paul looked up, flicked the TV off with the remote, and beckoned to Zay with an imperious finger. “Over here, please! The wine can wait.”
Zay was a Brat faced with a dilemma. He'd come close enough to note the paddle lying upon the coffee table. Shit. So, did he leave the rest of his purchases there on the kitchen table, and put them up later? Or did he put them away now and ignore Paul's beckoning finger? He hesitated a few precious seconds, then with a sigh, answered the Call of the Finger, and tried to ignore the paddle. Shit.
Paul patted the sofa next to him, and somehow that gesture spoke more of an order than an invitation. Turning to face Zay, he fixed a very firm gaze on his partner’s face. “I want to know what that tantrum was about.”
Zay sat down and tried not to squirm. "I don't know." he said, truthfully. "I really don't, I just felt frustrated and I lost my temper."
“I am loath to have to repeat what our rules are on behaviour, and I am pretty certain I don’t need to. You know them well. You just chose not to obey them. And you know how I feel about disobedience. Don’t you, Zaphod?” That last question came out short and sharp, like a whiplash, and Zay flinched.
"You don't like it very much." Zaphod responded softly. "But I wasn't being disobedient, well not on purpose. I just lost my temper, and I acted out which I know you hate. I'm sorry. I'll admit to stomping down the stairs on purpose, I didn't mean to slam the door that hard. That was an accident." He'd only meant to slam it a little, not that it would make much difference to Paul. Little slam, big slam - all the same.
Paul continued to regard Zay’s face for a long moment, and eventually he put up a hand to smooth a flock of curly hair away. Then he leaned forward and planted a light kiss on Zay’s lips. “Apology accepted, thank you. I appreciate your frank admission and that earns you points but unfortunately it does not negate what you did. So - now you get to decide. You can finish up the washing in the catering kitchen first before I paddle you. Or you can do it after, with a sore bottom. Your choice.”
"That's not really a choice, you know. A choice, a REAL choice would be like if I was offered the option of doing lines or a paddling, or being grounded or a paddling. A paddling before or a paddling after is NOT a choice." Zay stuck his bottom lip out. "Only a TOP would think that’s a choice. If I do dishes now, I'll just be thinking about the fact that you are gonna paddle me when I finish. Which means I won't be in any rush, so it'll just take longer. And I don't want to spend a lot of time doing the dishes. So, now would be better. But I'm NOT happy about it."
Paul listened attentively, and when Zay had finished his tirade, he gave a little sigh accompanied with a tiny shake of the head. “You are not required to be, sweetheart. Just remember the rules and expectations, and behave accordingly. That is your job. Come on, let’s not drag this out. I did say you earned points, didn’t I? Well, hand me that paddle and your pants stay on. Come, love!”
"How many points would have gotten me out of a paddling?" Zay picked up the paddle. "Never mind, I know the answer to that one. NONE." He glared down at the hated piece of wood that was about to make his life, and his butt, miserable.
Paul held out his hand and took the paddle, then firmly pulled Zay across his thighs. He easily manoeuvred Zay into position so that the rounded cheeks were directly in front of him and Zay’s chest was lying comfortably on the sofa.
Zay couldn't help the resigned sigh that escaped his lips. He wasn't, in any way, shape or form, a spanko. He didn't like to be swatted or paddled and he sure as hell didn't like being strapped. Fortunately the last was a very rare occurrence. He tried to make himself as comfortable as possible, given the circumstances.
Paul had no intention to make this a long and drawn out affair, but he wanted to make sure Zay understood the reason for the paddling. So he laid a comforting hand on Zay’s back while the paddle rested on the covered butt.
“This paddling is for the tantrum, for the stomping and for the slamming of the door. All of which I do not tolerate. It is not for throwing out the cleaning stuff, although we ARE going to have a talk about that later. You have replaced those items and that will serve as your punishment; however we do need to have a discussion on diving straight into reckless and impulsive actions. Understand, Zaphod?”
"Yes." Zay fought an inner battle between his concern for his backside and coming completely clean. He didn't know whether Paul kept track of the credit charges online. If he did, well, there went his month's grace period before Paul discovered the charges. Shit. Why did he do these things?
"Uhm, Paul?" Zay licked his lips. "I charged the stuff I bought on the household card." He closed his eyes and thought about stuffing his fingers in his ears as well. Paul was not gonna be happy.
Paul yanked the young man off his lap and placed him back on the sofa next to him. “What?” he asked. “Would you care to repeat what you just said?”
"Not really." Zay sighed. "I used the household charge card to pay for the stuff." He took a deep breath. "It was four hundred dollars. This cruelty free shit's not cheap."
Paul sucked in a long breath of air, willing himself to stay calm. His eyes pinned on Zay, his brows drawn close together in a rather menacing scowl. “Which part of your brain were you NOT using when you embarked on this mad and mindless cause?”
Before Zay could answer, he held up a finger, wagging it in front of Zay’s nose. “No, no, forget that question; it’s quite irrelevant at this stage. Answer me this instead. When you went out and charged all the purchases to our household card, did you do it on purpose, out of pique, just to spite me?”
Zay's eyes followed the wagging finger. He blinked and thought about how to answer Paul without being in worse trouble, but since he'd done it on purpose, that didn't appear very likely.
"Uhm. Mostly on purpose?" He winced at the look on Paul's face. "I would have paid it off next statement." He was so dead.
If it was possible, Paul’s face got even grimmer. His chest rose and fell a couple of times, and then he stood up, pulling Zay up with him. “Over into that corner, Zaphod. Both of us are going to spend some quiet time thinking this over. You – about your actions and more to the point your intentions. Me – about what I am going to do with you.”
As he was saying all that, he propelled the younger man into a corner, the part where the two walls met in a particularly boring part of the room, where there was nothing, not even a painting on the wall to take one’s mind away. Paul stood behind Zay a moment, breathing warm air on Zay’s neck and saying in a soft, but no less threatening, voice. “Move or speak and I will deal with you differently. Now think!”
With the trouble Zay was currently in, having Paul standing behind directly behind him, puffing warm air like some enraged bull did nothing to calm his nerves. He stood there, quietly as ordered, staring at that boring intersection of two walls, with very little enthusiasm. He was supposed to think? He almost snorted at that. If he'd used his brain, he wouldn't be here in the first place.
As was his habit when he felt unsettled or disturbed, Paul turned to his kitchen. He took out butter, flour, eggs, sugar, chocolate chunks, and vanilla powder. He brought out his pans and mixing bowls and measuring cups and electric beaters. Then he got to work, measuring and whisking.
Zay fidgeted, he couldn't help it. He wondered how long he was gonna be stuck in the corner. He wondered if Paul still intended to paddle him. Figured that was a given. He wondered why he did stupid ass things that ended up getting him paddled. He watched a bug crawling up the wall, and wondered if bugs ever got bored.
In the catering kitchen, Paul worked with only half a brain, the motions almost second nature to him by now. The other half of his brain grappled with his impulsive brat. How to deal with him? Paul was by nature an easy going man and he preferred to correct with non physical measures. But Zay had obviously overstepped the boundaries this time. The tantrum itself was bad enough but to follow through with defiance and retaliation.... hm ... even easy going had its limits!
It took Paul no more than twenty minutes to layer the chocolate and vanilla slice and get it ready for baking. The path was becoming clear to Paul as the sinfully rich slice got assembled. It worked – every time; cooking and baking was therapeutic! Closing the oven door with satisfaction, he set the timer, washed his hands, and grimaced at the pile of utensils still sitting in the huge double basins. Then he headed back out to the living room, where he could see the back of his brat, swaying slightly in the corner.
Zay could smell the chocolate on Paul - he loved chocolate - as he heard Paul come back into the living room. And he couldn't help it, he sniffled. He was already miserable.
“All right, you can come out of the corner now. Over here please.” Paul pointed to the floor in front of him.
A rather subdued Zay came out of the corner, followed the finger to his appointed place, and stood there, looking at the floor. He didn't think he could look Paul in the eyes right now. "I'm really sorry." he mumbled.
Paul lifted the chin and stared quietly into Zay’s face. “I know.” He said shortly, but his voice was soft and gentle despite his next words. “It’s not going to save you from a paddling though. What you did, Zay, is not acceptable. Defiance will not be tolerated. Now go fetch the paddle and come upstairs.”
"I didn't think it would." Zay sighed, and went over and picked up the paddle. He sure as hell didn't want the thing, why did he have to fetch it? Why didn't Paul carry the damned paddle upstairs? This was all just so, so unfair. He looked at the paddle, it seemed so innocent and non-threatening. But he knew better. He carried it upstairs, no use in stalling. He'd tried that before once, only made things worse.
Paul settled on the end of the bed, and waited for Zay to approach. He reached out to hook a finger into Zay’s belt and pulled Zay closer. “You’ve just used up all your brownie points, my lad. These are coming down!” Paul unzipped Zay’s jeans, and then pushed them down, all the way to Zay’s ankles, swiftly followed by his briefs.
Zay kicked off his sneakers. He figured he'd kick his jeans and briefs off at some point. He never managed to lie there quietly."Aww, cummon Paul. You just gave them to me. If I've used them all up, then shouldn't my NEXT paddling be on the bare? “ Not that Paul paid any attention to him. Nope. There went his jeans and briefs down to his ankles. He shivered, not so much from chill as from dread.
Paul once again settled Zay over his thighs. Here we go again, Zay said to himself, and sniffled a bit. A paddling in the bedroom meant only one thing – it was going to be a thorough punishment. Bedroom spankings were always worse than downstairs spankings. And he could tell this was gonna be a bad one.
Zay sniffled again, feeling very sorry for himself at the moment.
The paddle was picked up, held firmly in Paul’s hands. With his left pressing down on the small of Zay’s back, Paul raised his right. Zay hated this part, waiting for it to begin. Well, not as much as the actual paddling, but pretty close to it. He felt the displacement of air, heard the crack and then the pain hit. The paddle came down in one smooth motion, sending a loud crack throughout the room, and turning the clear white flesh on Zay’s right cheek a rosy pink. Before he could get enough air to holler, Paul landed another one. Zay yelped and tried to push off Paul's lap at the second smack, he couldn't help it. It stung like HELL!
Paul tightened his hold, used to Zay’s reaction and easily able to predict Zay’s movements. The paddle landed on alternate cheeks, in a slow and measured tempo, covering the entire backside with red and white blotches. Paul made sure every smack counted, allowing a small lull in between them.
Zay grabbed the bed covers and bunched them in his fists. His eyes stung and his backside felt like it had been doused in gasoline and then Paul had tossed a lit match onto it. He wriggled and kicked, to no avail. He was stuck pure and simple, until Paul decided to end it and release him. His yelps increased in intensity and pitch, and then broke as he began to cry, and repeat over and over "I'm sorry" through his sobs.
Paul took note of the cries and pleas, and decided the message had been properly reinforced. He rested the heated paddle on the even more heated backside and asked serenely, “Are we going to be rushing into any more rash and impulsive behaviour without exercising our brain cells?”
Zay's initial response would have been 'of course I am'. But that paddle was still there, sitting on his backside, ready for action if he gave the wrong answer. He sniffled in misery and finally answered. "No Paul."
“And what is the rule about tantrums?”
"Not allowed. Ever." *Now put that damned paddle up*
“Very good! One last question. Is it all right for you to defy me and my instructions, and to find devious ways just to spite me?”
"No Paul." Zay started to cry again, though with less intensity. "I'm sorry."
Paul’s eyes immediately softened. He hated to see his brat crying. “Hush now. It’s over. I am all done. OK, baby, hush ...” Paul soothed, laying the paddle down and pulling Zay back with him onto the bed. He leaned back against the bed head, with Zay spilling over his chest.
Zay continued to cry softly for a few minutes, as he lay there and listened to Paul's heartbeat, being soothed by its rhythm. His eyelids felt so heavy, spankings always left him worn out. He mumbled something about still needing to wash dishes, and then he drifted off.
Once Zay’s breathing had settled, Paul slipped out from under him. He tugged the heavy blanket off and used only the thin cotton sheet to cover Zay’s naked, and very red, butt. Then Paul went softly down the stairs, into the kitchen, and began the arduous task of washing up.
An hour later, Paul brought a tray upstairs, balancing two cups of hot coffee and a large serving of chocolate and vanilla slice. He put the tray down on the bedside table, climbed back into the bed and kissed Zay awake.
Zay slowly opened his eyes, which felt all puffy. And his pillow was wet and snotty, euw. "I smell chocolate. I like chocolate." He rubbed his eyes and ran his fingers through his tangled hair.
“Yes honey. I know you like chocolate.” He handed a steaming cup to Zay, who winced as he sat up. “My poor baby,” Paul crooned, unable to completely hide the grin.
"Hmph. Now you say that." Zay sipped his coffee carefully. "I hate it when you paddle me slowly, you always hit a lot harder and it takes longer. I'll take fast and furious anytime." *And I can't believe I just said that*. Zay stuffed a huge hunk of the cake into his mouth and smiled in pure bliss.
“I will try to remember that the next time, honey,” Paul said, as he brushed a crumb away from the corner of Zay’s lips.
Zay started to choke and took a long swallow of his coffee. "Uhm, that's ok. Really. Don't pay any attention to me, I'm babbling."
“Zay darling, the last thing I like to do is to have to punish you. I don’t enjoy turning your butt red, and I definitely don’t enjoy seeing you cry. All I want is for you to remember the basic rules we have in place.”
"I mostly remember, I just don't always follow them. But I try. I didn't mean to lose my temper today, it just sorta happened."
“Sorta? Well ... hmmm ... at least I like the try part. Tell you what. Why don’t we have a night out this weekend? We haven’t done it in a while.”
Zay nodded enthusiastically. "Nope, we haven't, so it sounds good.”
“All right, I will take you out for dinner at some place fancy. Then you can decide if you want to catch a movie, or go to some bar for drinks, or whatever. How does that sound?”
“I'd like someplace where I can wear my jeans, though, like maybe Hard Rock Cafe? I promise not to wear any jeans with rips and holes. I think I've got some. Some where.”
“Uh-huh...” Paul murmured encouragement, gazing at his lover with amusement and contentment. Some of the closest times he had felt with Zay, the most connected, was after a spanking, like now. It was as if the slate had been wiped clean and they both had a fresh start.
His hand rubbed hypnotically along Zay’s naked thigh, inching its way slowly upward.
“There's an installation show at Art Space I wanted to see, it's all interactive. We could do that." Zay stuffed another piece of cake into his mouth, and then began to notice the hand coming to rest on his hip.
“Yes, honey, we’ll do all that ... and ... um, anything else?”
Zay’s eyes turned mischievous. “Then we can come home and make mad monkey love."
The End .... (of this part only ... more to come)