New to Quest Five?
The stories are best enjoyed when read in order beginning with May 1, 2009.

Welcome To Quest Five
Allison Beaumont is having trouble finding a job after college until one day the wealthy and powerful Joseph Candle offers her a job at his rather unusual corporation, where mistakes can lead to bare bottomed spankings. Adopting the alias of Virginia West, she joins four highly skilled colleagues, racing around the globe in search of mysterious treasures, but wherever she goes, trouble is sure to follow.
Note: Some stories contain scenes of a sexual nature, corporal punishment, non-consensual corporal punishment, and strong language which some reader's may find offensive. If you feel this material might be inappropriate for you please move on to another blog by clicking the next blog link at the top of the page.

November 4, 2009

Casting Shadows: Doctor's Orders

I parked on the street, turned off the ignition and sat there. Looking out through the glass of my passenger door window I felt like a spectator, peeping in on the world I used to know. The yard lacked a white picket fence and a squeaky hinged gate, but an old coral tree, split into a half dozen shoots at its base, grew from the center and a neatly trimmed hedge sat against the front of the house, providing the sense, if not the actuality, of privacy from passersby. Brick framed planter boxes lined the walkway leading to the front door, filled with white, purple and red impatiens. It was all familiar and yet I was seeing it, really seeing it, for the first time. The perfect suburban house in the perfect suburban neighborhood, it is what I was raised to want, so why don't I want it?

Jenny opened the front door and waved at me, no doubt wondering why I was simply sitting in front of her house and staring. I waved back feeling a little like an idiot, but managing to act as if nothing was wrong. We hugged on her doorstep before she invited me inside, into the living room. Always the perfect hostess, she fetched a pair of cold colas from her refrigerator and handed me a glass filled with more ice than I had seen in the Arctic. Okay maybe not that much but when it clears the lip of the glass floating in cola, it is definitely excessive. We sat on opposite ends of her red microfiber couch, twisting to face each other, pretending to be comfortable.

"Not to pry," She said, with prying eyes. "But shouldn't you be at work?"

I glanced at my watch. What time it read, I do not know. I barely even noticed it was still on my wrist because the gesture was reflexive and only served to cover the time it took me to think of what I was going to say because until she mentioned it, I had given no thought at all to the time of day and where I was versus where I was supposed to be, at work.

"Last minute travel plans at work, so they gave me a little time before I have to jump on the plane," I said.

"Weren't you just on a trip?" She asked.

"Yeah, got back this morning," I said.

Jenny held her glass to her mouth, ice resting against her lips and perhaps a taste of cola dripping onto her tongue but if I had sipped my glass for as long as she held hers in place, I would have drained it twice, at least. It was a sure sign she was thinking thoughts I would not want to hear and trying to figure out how to say them without rubbing me the wrong way. She ought to know by now, it simply is not possible, but family always seems to have the best inconvenience of either short or long memories.

"You know I've never known an administrative assistant to travel as much as you do," She said, lowering her glass into her lap.

"But how many have you known that worked for Quondam?" I asked.

"A couple actually," She said, frowning a little. "Funny thing, neither of them has heard of you."

"It's a big company," I said, shifting my position.

"42 Administrative assistants and they can name them all," She said.

"Obviously not," I said, gesturing at myself.

"I'm not an idiot," She said. "Salespeople don't keep your traveling schedule, let alone AA's. I know you are lying about your work, what I can't figure, is why."

I drained my glass and wished for more, trying to devise an explanation that would not only sound reasonable, but that she would also believe. It was my worst nightmare and yet it was not totally unexpected. I had warned Mr. Candle about the inadequacy of his cover position from the beginning and now that it was all but crumbling down around me, he was of course nowhere around to provide the support I desperately needed.

"I'm not sure how to respond to that," I said.

"You could always try the truth," She replied.

"I'll be the first to admit my job is unusual, but I can't make it into something its not just to please your friends who think they know everything," I said.

"I'm not trying to start a fight," She said. "I'm only saying I understand where your mother is coming from on all this traveling. It doesn't make sense and you can't expect your friends and family to pretend it does."

"And here all I was expecting is for everyone to be happy I have a job and am starting my own life," I said. "I guess I expected too much."

"If you expect us to accept obvious lies as truth, then yes, you are expecting too much," She said.

She reached out and refilled my glass with the cans she had brought with her. It was an act completely foreign to the attitude she was projecting and the tone of our conversation, but so much like how my mother would behave, she nearly made me laugh. All that stopped me was the uneasiness settling in the pit of my stomach like cement shoes at the bottom of the ocean.

"I am what I am. If that's not good enough for you, I guess I could make up a story for you, but what's the point? You won't believe it either and if you do, you'd be every bit the fool you already think I'm taking you for," I said.

"I'm not trying to tell you how to live your life. I know how your parents can be though and if you are lying to try to placate them, Steve and I might be able to help, but you have to trust us and let us know what's going on," She said.

"Nothing is going on, really," I said, hoping it sounded less lame in her ears than it did in mine.

Jenny shrugged and pretended to sip from her glass again while I drained mine and sat it down on the coaster she had pushed my way. Neither of us seemed to know where to go from there, we weren't going to talk about the things she wanted to talk about and I was feeling like I had made a mistake in coming. Here I was trying to avoid a family conflict and somehow I had walked right into the middle of one. 

"How are things with Mark?" Jenny asked out of the blue.

"Fine," I said, not really wanting to go into the details.

"You don't like him?" She asked.

"I said we were fine," I said.

"I just thought if everything was good, things would be better than fine," She said.

"It's complicated," I said. "He seems like a good guy, but then there are times when I don't trust him."

"You think he's seeing other women?" She asked, refilling my glass again.

I stared at the cola wishing it was half rum, at least then I'd have an excuse when I finally lost my temper and tried to strangle her. Instead, I had to force myself to take a few deep breaths and pretend I was not being interrogated. It really is no wonder my parents love Jenny as much as they do, she's cut from their same cloth and framed in their mold.

"No nothing so soap opera-ish. He's secretive and his motives are hard to understand at times," I said.

"In other words it has nothing to do with him and everything to do with the woman you see when you look in the mirror," She said. "It's hard to think someone else might actually love you for who you are, when you don't even like yourself. I know. I've been there, but you hang in there, things we'll get better. I promise."

Oh, I like who I see just fine in the mirror. The only problem I have there is I can't seem to figure out if I'm looking at Allison Beaumont or Virginia West, but that's really got nothing to do with Mark. Thinking it, there on her couch made me realize how much I really wanted to say it out loud, but of course, Jenny is the last person to tell. She'd probably have me checked into a four-star white padded room before I could finish explaining the alternate persona was a necessity of my highly unusual job.

"You're probably right," I said. "Mark is incredibly cute and his hands, he can do the most wonderful things with his hands. I should just enjoy it all while it lasts and hope it last forever, right?"

"That's the spirit. You should call him and go spend whatever time you have left before your flight. He was asking Steve about you just the other day and I could tell he was really missing you. I bet you could get a room right by the airport. If you have a couple hours still I'm sure he'd make it worth it," She said.

"Unfortunately, I don't think I have that long, which reminds me; The reason I stopped by was I'm going out of town and I know Geoff's birthday is this weekend and I just can't be sure I'll be back for it. I was hoping you could get him something from me, I'll give you some money and I have a card for him here," I said, reaching into my purse and handing her the card I had purchased before coming to her home. "And let him know I'll take him out special when I get back."

"Sure, anything to help. He'll be disappointed but he knows you wouldn't miss it if it wasn't something really important," She said, not at all trying to make me feel guilty.

I was saved from trying to keep the sarcasm out of my voice while thanking her by the ringing of my phone. A half genuine smile settled on my face while I dug into my purse and pulled out the phone with a less than genuine shrug of apology. The display told me it was Kyra calling and I hoped the conversation would be quiet and mundane enough to keep Jenny from asking more questions or worse, making more assumptions about my professional life.

"Hello," I said, settling the phone against the side of my face.

"Mr. Barker suggested I call you and let you know we are ready to leave as soon as you get back," Kyra said.

"Oh, I see. I'm just finishing up here and should be back there in a half hour. We can meet in the lobby," I said.

"Yes, ma'am," Kyra said. "He also wanted me to inform you he has authorized Dr. Michaels to reinforce the lesson you obviously didn't learn about keeping us informed of your whereabouts during business hours."

I swallowed the arguments building up in my throat because Kyra was not the person to argue it with and I certainly did not need Jenny knowing anything about it either. Nodding my head, I realized it was a stupid gesture that conveyed absolutely nothing to Kyra on the other end of the phone and Jenny was looking at me trying not to laugh as I looked at the ceiling shaking my head at myself.

"Understood. I'll be there in a half hour," I said, ending the call and putting my phone away.

"I guess you have to go," Jenny said.

I wondered just how much of the call she heard. The prospect of an imminent spanking from Dr. Michaels was weighing in on my thoughts as well and I found it took all my concentration to avoid blushing like a naughty schoolgirl. Jenny's piercing gaze was far from helping matters, but I comforted myself with the knowledge, she was unlikely to refrain from lecturing me if she had any clue about the trouble I was in at work. Her silence was in its own way the best evidence I would ever have that whatever she overheard from the call was more incomplete than complete.

"Yeah, I better run. Tell Steve I said hi and give Geoff my love," I said.

Half an hour later I rushed through the front doors to Quondam Towers lobby with a knot in my stomach telling me I should be dragging my feet instead. The young women at the reception all stopped to watch me as I crossed the floor, heading to the elevator behind their station. Cathy stepped out in front of me bringing me to a stop next to the reception.

"Good afternoon, Miss West," She said, politely.

"Good afternoon, Cathy. Did you need something?" I asked.

"I have instructions for you from Dr. Michaels," She said. "He and Ms. Jax will be down shortly to meet you."

"I expected they would be waiting here for me," I said.

"Dr. Michaels asked me to inform him when you arrived," Cathy explained.

"Oh, I see, very well then, thank you," I said.

"Yes, Miss. I've also been instructed to collect your suit and undergarments and have you face the wall with hands on your head," She said, swallowing a bit, clearly embarrassed by what was expected of her.

My eyes widened and I felt my face heat up as her statement began to sink in. I desperately hoped I had heard her wrong or at the very least, misunderstood.

"My suit?" I asked, hoping the reference was less inclusive than it sounded.

"Yes, Miss. Blazer, skirt, blouse, stockings, and shoes as well as your panties and bra. Dr. Michaels expects you facing the wall completely naked." Cathy said, clarifying beyond all doubt.

I blinked at her as the pit in my stomach turned into a black hole of despair. A quick glance around the lobby revealed it was far from a private location, several men and women seating in the reception area by the fountain, easily able to see me and the wall I was expected to face, and that was not counting the women at the reception desk, all of whom were watching me while pretending to be doing anything but watching.

"I think it would be best if you didn't keep him waiting Miss. I have to call him when you've complied," Cathy said.

I sighed and scolded myself for getting into the situation. Dr. Michaels' instructions were unorthodox and extreme, but given it was only a few days ago I had been disciplined for the exact same oversight by Jack, bare bottomed in full view of our colleagues. If that had failed to impress upon me the seriousness with which Jack took the situation, then it had undoubtedly seemed to Dr. Michaels, if not everyone, that the reinforcement would need to be a step up in severity. Naked in the lobby was most definitely a step up and a major one but did I have anyone to blame but myself?

The blazer came off the easiest, sliding off my shoulders and passing from my trembling hands to Cathy's. I hesitated a moment trying to decide between removing my blouse or skirt next. Neither appealed to me especially as I could feel every eye in the lobby staring at me. I realized of course, it did not matter, because both were coming off in the end and so I unbuttoned my blouse and slipped it off my shoulders, handing it to Cathy. I heard the hushed whispers from by the fountain and knew without a doubt I was the subject.

My skirt, shoes and stockings followed in short order and I was left standing in the middle of the lobby wearing nothing but my bra and panties. I told myself it did not matter but my shaking hands said otherwise. The normally simple task of unclasping my bra seemed to take five minutes and when it was in Cathy's hands I covered my bare breasts as if my hands could somehow stave off the embarrassment. It was hopeless and I knew it.

Cathy nodded sympathetically at me with her eyes glancing at my last remaining garment as if to say, "those too." I bit my lip and forced my hands to the waistband and slid them quickly down my legs, stepping out of them as gracefully as possibly, when stark naked in a public place. Cathy took them from my hand and pointed to the wall as if I might have forgotten the final part of the instructions. I turned toward it and walked until my toes and nose were pressed against the wall. I had briefly entertained the fantasy I might be able to walk right through it and disappear from view but reality intervened and the wall remained solid and cold.

"Hands on your head, Miss," Cathy said.

I huffed, annoyed she felt the need to remind me, but quickly complied rather than risk Dr. Michaels being informed I was less than cooperative. A little resistance and feet dragging had to be expected, given the extremeness of his instructions, but I was acutely aware that too much could easily be construed as defiance which would leave me trying to explain myself to Mr. Candle and probably facing a choice between being fired or suffering through one of the company's more severe and comprehensive correction programs. The smart thing would be to quit, but Mr. Candle has an annoying knack for talking me into things I don't want to do. 

"Turn around," Dr. Michaels ordered, from behind me.

I spun around and one look at his face had me staring at the floor instead. His eyes were cold and his face was drawn tight, squeezing out any semblance of sympathy that might have existed. My hands drifted from my head to try and cover my exposed breasts and vagina even though I should have known better. Genuine tears of remorse stung at my eyes.

"Did I say you could lower your hands?" He asked.

"No, sir," I said, raising them back into place and hoping the indiscretion would be forgotten.

He cleared his throat and stepped up closer to me, unashamedly staring at my naked breasts. Kyra stood a few feet behind him with the mother of all smirks planted firmly on her face. I had hoped she would not have the opportunity to witness my shame, but all the while knowing it was too much to hope. Dr. Michaels looked back over his shoulder at her and I wondered if he had somehow guessed at my thoughts.

"Kyra, see to it the limo is loaded with our supplies and ready to depart when we are finished here," He said.


"Unless you would like to join Virginia?" Dr. Michaels said.

"No, sir," She said quickly and scurried off to follow orders.

Dr. Michaels returned his full attention to me and began to pace a short line in front of me. His eyes clearly feasting on my nubile and exposed flesh. The red glow of embarrassment on my cheeks was undoubtedly giving the entire tower a reddish tint on the outside or so my imagination told me in an attempt to find any remotely accessible humor in the situation that might make it a degree more bearable. The concept of a daytime red light district in Los Angeles is far from amusing though when you are the extent of its existence.

In the form of lecture, Dr. Michaels said, "Needless to say, I am disappointed, Virginia. Mere days ago, Mr. Barker addressed and disciplined you for this sort of reckless behavior. He explained, after hours, you are protected by security forces who monitor and patrol those personal sides of your life, but during the day, during work hours, it falls upon us to protect each other. I should not have to remind you that we can scarcely protect you when we don't even know where you are."

"I'm sorry," I said. "I was preoccupied, but I know it is a poor excuse."

He stopped pacing and faced me straight on with no more than 24 inches between us. His eyes managed to unlock themselves from staring at my more intimate parts and focus on my face. The coldness of his gaze made me shiver and wish he'd go back to staring a bit lower.

Dr. Michaels said, "If I thought or if Mr. Barker thought, preoccupation was all it amounted to, we would see no need to take these disciplinary steps. The truth is you are too bold, too full of yourself and you think nothing of taking risks either because you do not realize the severity of the risks or you think yourself invincible. It is unacceptable in either case and today the responsibility to teach you just how unacceptable your behavior has been, falls to me."

"I imagine," He said, "You think me cruel, perhaps even a pervert for ordering you here like this. However, it has been my considerable experience that young ladies such as yourself often require extreme measures before they seriously contemplate a change in their behavior. I hope someday you will come to realize this was done with your best interest in mind, but if you choose to think ill of me in the meantime, I will understand and take comfort if at the very least I have given you cause to think about your actions and consider risks before taking them."

Dr. Michaels turned to Cathy and she opened a drawer in the reception desk. A soft clank echoed in the lobby as she pulled out a blue colored paddle. It was completely different from any paddle I had seen in use thus far at Quondam, while the same company blue, it was rectangular in shape and made of a medium thick, flexible plastic with five large holes cut into the flat surface in the standard pattern of a die. I was under no illusions, it would hurt and it was obviously built to do just that. 

He took the paddle and pointed it menacingly toward me. It was not that he went out of his way to shake it at me or anything but if you point a paddle at someone with the intention to use it on them, it's menacing. I focused on breathing and tried not to think about whether or not those holes would actually raise blister on my butt in the next few minutes. Dr. Michaels took a moment to adjust the heft of the paddle in his grip and admire the manner in which its smooth surface sliced the air between us. We were undoubtedly thinking about the exact same thing however I doubt our thoughts could have been more different.

Dr. Michaels walked a few feet away toward the center of the lobby and pointed at the floor next to him with the paddle. There was no hiding in the location where I stood, but in the place he pointed to, there was absolutely no way anyone in the local vicinity would not be openly staring at me. I have little doubt he was aware of the significance and had chosen the spot specifically with it in mind.

"Stand here," He said, when I did not move fast enough for him.

On wobbly legs I marched across the floor wondering how many camera phones were busily snapping pictures to be sent to friends and family with messages in the tone of, "You won't believe what I saw." The harder I tried to push the thoughts from my mind the more they dominated it. Arriving at the designated spot, all I wanted was to take my licks and be done and gone. It would be hard facing Cathy and her coworkers on my next arrival at Quondam Tower but at least if a few days have gone by the humiliation will also have faded to a more tolerable level.

"Touch your toes," Dr. Michaels said, signaling the time for talking and waiting had finally passed.

I leaned down, trying to keep my legs straight and together, but my fingers dangles in the air, inches above my toes. For Dr. Michaels, it was not good enough.

"Open your legs and get all the way down," He said.

A moment of hesitation brought about a light slap of the paddle across my tightly stretched buttocks and between the surprise and sting it was enough to make me comply. I squeezed my eyes closed as if being blind to the spectators would make them blind to me as well. It was a nice theory so far as particle physics goes, but in the real world, things still happen whether we observe them or not.

Dr. Michaels proceeded to demonstrate by raising the paddle in the air and slicing it down into the most padded seat of my buttocks resulting in a echoing clap affirming firm contact with my posterior despite my shut and non-observational eyes. The sting which followed eliminated any remaining doubts of the ineffectiveness of the theory and left me wish whole-heartedly to be any place, but where I was. 

I counted all the way to twenty before the next swat landed and twenty again before the next, confirming my suspicions that Dr. Michaels was in no rush to finish his task of spanking me. On the fourth swat I was sorely, pardon the pun, tempted to jump up, grab my butt and beg, "No more, no more." It was only the thought of facing anyone in the lobby, Dr Michaels included, afterward which prevented me from making such a foolish fuss. There was absolutely no part of me which believed the plea would have been successful in any case.

Slowly, steadily, painfully, he continued paddling my rear end until I was honestly sobbing and shockingly, to me at least, apologizing for my carefree attitude and inconsiderate behavior. If my father had heard any of that, he would undoubtedly have shook Dr. Michaels hand and asked him for an autograph. The horrid thought stuck in my head a moment longer than it should have when in a panic I suddenly wondered if either of Jenny's friends might have seen me and sent one of those phone pictures to her. That they would have no way of knowing my connection to Jenny was simply the kind of irony life loves to throw in my face. 

"Stand up," Dr. Michaels said. "Hands, back on your head."

It was difficult not to pause and try to rub some of the intense burn and beehive sting out of my blazing backside, but I managed. I sniffled, trying to keep the tears under control although the wetness on my cheeks seemed bent on drawing more puddles from my eyes. I glanced around the room feeling sheepish and ashamed and all the more so to notice a dozen eyes or more staring at the sight I presented before them with amused grins beaming proudly on their faces.

"Come along," Dr. Michaels said.

He walked toward the reception desk where Cathy was trying to look like she had not been watching. I followed a step behind, making sure I kept my hands where they were supposed to be and not where I desperately wanted them to be. Dr. Michaels handed the paddle back to Cathy, which I took as a good sign, because it at least meant no more swats in the immediate future. 

Dr. Michaels turned to look outside, where Kyra was leaning up against the outside of our black limousine. When she noticed Dr. Michaels attention on her she signaled him everything was ready. He nodded briefly at her and turned back to me.

"Are you ready to get back to work now, Virginia?" He asked.

I nodded and he raised an impatient eyebrow at me.

"Yessir," I said.


  1. Ashley, I believe that Quondam's methods of discipline are a little severe, to say the least.
    Still if it gets results.
    Warm hugs,

  2. Ash,

    another Outstanding story...where this discipline was a little on the severe side it was warranted cause it was the second time Virginia was called out on her behavior so seems fair the discipline should be a little more severe. very good post/scene was done very well.


  3. Today's chapter was absolutely epic. Definitely the best spanking in the series so far. There's no doubt in my mind it was deserved either. V was not at all taking the threat against her seriously.

    I think most people would assume if spanking was used in the workplace it would be always be something carried out in private. It's been done in front of witnesses in previous chapters, but utilizing a populated lobby is definitely a bold step in the right direction. A story is most memorable when it breaks through expectations like this.