Wednesday, 29 July 2015

Mark and the Holiday Haircut

 
Dora Legge ran the seaside guest house where Hilda Fry and her thirteen year old son, Mark were staying. The house was situated facing the town’s esplanade with its colourful flowerbeds and neatly trimmed lawns. For those holidaymakers who wanted something more energetic to do than sit on the beach all day, there was crazy-golf and a putting-green. There were ice-cream stalls and sweet-shops selling mint rock and other teeth-rotting confectioneries. Gift shops did a brisk trade in novelty items, sun hats, windbreaks, buckets and spades, as well as postcards (both saucy and holiday views) and a selection of paperbacks and magazines suitable for reading on the beach.

All things considered it was a charming holiday destination and as long as anyone could remember, the sun always shone during the ‘season’. The main town, with its selection of shops, was situated in a valley which swept in a gentle curve away from the sea and up to the railway station which was served by a branch from the mainline some ten miles distant. A small fishing harbour, connected to the station by a narrow-gauge railway, provided modest employment for some of the townsfolk, but abundant opportunities for the more artistic members of the local community. Visitors too came armed with sketchpads, pencils, brushes and paints, for it was a delightful place, rightly famed for its wonderful ‘light’.

It was no surprise to learn that young Mark spent practically his whole time dressed in nothing more than his swim-trunks and plastic beach-sandals. Since Mrs Legge's guest house was only a few yards from the seafront, there was simply no need for Mark to wear anything else in the sunny weather.

Of course mum had packed some smart clothes for Mark to wear for church and any outings they might take together, but as this outfit was a jolly short-trousered sailor-suit which Mark simply hated to be seen in, he was happier to spend all his time in swim-trunks and sandals.

Mrs Legge, or Aunty Dora as she was known to her younger guests, was always full of advice which Mark found infuriating. When such advice was given as it always seemed to interfere with his plans. Aunty Dora would, for instance, advise that sun hats should be worn. Mark thought these were sissy and usually contrived to ignore this advice. There was one day, however, that he wished he’s listened and done what he was told.

Breakfast had been taken as usual in the front-room which overlooked the esplanade. Mrs Legge tapped the barometer. It showed no sign of movement. There had been a high pressure system sitting over their part of the country for a week now and it showed no sign of change. The mercury in the thermometer too never seemed to get any lower, day or night. Mark was glad he was on holiday and as he crunched his way through his morning bowl of cornflakes he planned the day’s strategy with regard to his ongoing plan to divert the stream which ran down across the sandy beach. It was a quite pointless task and one entirely suited to the abundant energies of a thirteen year old schoolboy like Mark, since by the next day all traces of his previous day’s work were obliterated by the incoming tide.

Mrs Legge tapped the barometer once more then turned to announce that it was going to be a hot day, a very hot day. Then she walked over to Mark and ran her hand through his mousey blond hair:

“It’s about time this little boy paid a visit to the barber’s,” Mrs Legge announced.

Mum looked up from the paper she was reading and agreed: “Yes, it is looking rather straggly, I agree…”

“Oh, mum… do I have to,” Mark interrupted. He thought it very unfair to have to pay a visit to the barber’s shop. He was on his holidays!

“There’s a very good barber’s shop on the High Street,” Mrs Legge informed Mark’s mum, “I always recommend young boys who come to stay with me visit Mr Kirby at least once during their holidays… it helps to keep boys cooler and less fractious if they have have their hair cut nice and short… keeps them looking smart too. Mr Kirby might be a little old-fashioned, but he always gives boys a proper haircut,” she said as she teased the longer hair on the nape of Mark’s neck.

Mark, who was already dressed in his swim-trunks and sandals ready for another day battling to divert the course of the stream on the beach, was busy trying to finish eating his cereal in double quick time. The hair tickled his neck and when he renewed his protest that it wasn’t fair to have a haircut on holiday, he coughed and spluttered causing milky cornflakes to drip from his chin and splash down onto his bare chest.

“Now look what a mess you’ve made…” mum said and watched as Mrs Legge, without a moment's hesitation, took Mark’s head firmly in her hand and with her other hand, picked up a spare napkin and wiped the boy’s mouth and chin. Mark could do nothing and sat still as Mrs Legge proceeded to wipe his bare chest as well.

“There, what did I say?” Mrs Legge observed as she rubbed the cloth roughly over Mark’s chest. “He’s getting fractious already what with his long hair and this heat… Dear me, what mucky-pups boys are...”
 
When no words of apology or thanks were forthcoming from Mark, Mrs Fry was obliged to prompt her son: “Isn’t there something you should be saying, Mark?”

Mark looked up at Mrs Legge staring down at him: “Thank you Aunty Dora,” he said politely, “I’m sorry I made a mess.”

“Perhaps we should get him a bib to wear,” Mrs Legge suggested.

“A very good idea,” mum replied.

“MUM!!” was Mark’s response. He wasn’t sure whether he was being teased or not, but didn’t want to leave it to chance.

The subject was abruptly changed back to that of the length of Mark’s hair and before he knew what was happening mum had agreed with Mrs Legge that it was high time Mark paid a visit to the barber’s chair for something the landlady called a ‘holiday haircut’.

“But mum… I’ve got loads to do on the beach…” Mark said and protested that it was far more important to dig channels in the sand so the stream could be made to flow into a big pond he and some other boys were planning to build. He couldn’t let his friends down. “Please, mum…”

Mrs Legge merely fingered Mark’s straggly locks disdainfully and sniffed as if to say that haircuts were far more important than playtime on the beach. Mum got the message.

“You’ll feel much better and look a lot smarter with a nice haircut, Mark. It’s hardly going to take up the whole day… you’ll have plenty of time to play with your friends later. Besides there are one or two things I need to get from the shops…”

“... but, mum…” Mark pleaded. Mark hated having his hair cut at the best of times. The thought of having it cut on holiday was simply awful. It just wasn’t fair!

Mrs Legge smiled at Mark who was frowning with indignation and quite obviously trying to think of other excuses to get out of a trip to the barber’s. She spoke: “You can keep your swim-trunks on, Mark… the barber is quite used to boys being sent up from the beach for haircuts… and that way you can go straight down to the beach once the barber’s finished with you and join your friends…”

“That’s very thoughtful of you, Mrs Legge,” mum said, “That’s a good idea, isn’t it Mark?”

The thought of being able to dash straight down to the beach seemed to mollify Mark and he was reluctantly forced to agree with mum. He was of course also obliged to thank Aunty Dora for her suggestion.

Mark was sent upstairs to clean his teeth after breakfast while mum and Mrs Legge discussed his forthcoming haircut.

“Oh the best thing is for boys to have their hair nice and short this time of the year,” Mrs Legge said when she was asked for her opinion by Mrs Fry. “Mr Kirby, the barber, is very experienced. If you tell him you’re staying with me and that you want a nice, neat holiday haircut for Mark, he’ll know what’s required.”

“I’m sure you know what’s best, Mrs Legge,” mum replied, “I tell Mr Kirby what you said. I thought I might take the opportunity to do a little shopping while I’m in the High Street. Do you think Mr Kirby would mind if I left Mark with him to have his hair cut?”

“I’m sure that if Mark behaves himself and does what he’s told, that would be perfectly alright with Mr Kirby…”

So it was that Mark and his mum left ‘Sea Breeze’, Mrs Legge’s guest house and set off along the esplanade before turning off into the High Street. For thirteen year old Mark it suddenly felt very strange to be walking along wearing nothing but his very brief boy-trunks and red plastic beach sandals among the shoppers who were all fully dressed of course. His feeling of discomfort wasn’t helped when he found himself being looked at; indeed one or two girls actually stopped and giggled when they saw Mark so scantily clad walking up the High Street. Mark began to wish he’d asked mum if he could wear something more than his embarrassingly brief swim-trunks and plastic play-sandals. Matters were made worse as Mark felt his little trunks ‘riding up’ between his bottom cheeks as he walked along beside mum. On the beach this was annoying, but Mark was usually far enough away from grown-ups for it not to bother him that much, besides he could adjust his little swim-trunks easily enough without anyone noticing. But on the High Street it was different. For a start Mark knew that if he started to pull at the back of his boy-trunks, it would simply draw everyone's attention to the fact his bottom was almost completely bare, but there was something else. To his intense annoyance mum insisted Mark hold her hand as the street was quite busy and she didn’t want him wandering off. Mark told his mum that he was thirteen and quite able to look after himself… Didn’t he go camping with his friends? Wasn’t he allowed to go swimming at the local pool? Didn’t he go to scouts? Why, one of his best friends even had a small rowing-boat which the two of then would take out on the river...

All this made little impression on mum who simply said: “That’s as maybe… but we’re not at home now, we’re on holiday and I don’t want you getting lost.” She paused and pulled her son closer, “Now, I want you to behave yourself when we get to the barber’s and do everything Mr Kirby tells you… do your understand, Mark? I don’t want you to start making a fuss…”

Mark furrowed his brow, upset that his mum felt the need to tell him… him, a boy of thirteen… how to behave.

“Do you understand what I’m saying, Mark?”

“Yes, mum…”

“Good…”

Without thinking Mark slipped his free hand round to his bottom. To his horror all he could feel was his own bare skin… his super-slim boy’s swim-trunks had ridden all the way up between his bottom cheeks. Mark’s pert young bottom was completely bare!

Mum tugged Mark’s arm again and they resumed their walk. Mark did his best to try and keep his bottom from the stares of the curious shoppers. He prayed he’d have the time to sort himself out when they got to Mr Kirby's, the barber.

Although it hadn’t yet occurred to Mark there was also the not unimportant question of what steps he could take in the event of his becoming, let’s say, a little over-excited. On the beach arousals were something a boy could hide quite easily by electing to lie on his tummy in the sand, or to head for the sea for a swim. In either case the boy could normally get far enough away from onlookers who then wouldn’t be able to see the prominent bulge in his boy-trunks.

I was of course quite a different state of affairs in the crowded High Street and it didn’t help matters that mum was holding his right hand and pulling him along. Fortunately for Mark, Mr Kirby’s barber’s shop was not much further and with a last reminder from his mum to behave himself they entered the shop.

Mr Kirby was busy sweeping up cut hair from around one of the chairs. Mark looked around and thought it did look to be a very old-fashioned barber’s. He noticed a polished but very worn-looking short plank of wood had been placed across the arms of one of the chairs. He correctly assumed this was for younger boys to sit on so the chair needn’t be raised so high in order for Mr Kirby to reach their heads. Mr Kirby looked up to greet Mrs Fry and Mark as they entered his shop.

Mrs Fry explained how they were staying with Mrs Legge and how he had been recommended by her to cut her son’s hair.

“Mrs Legge said to ask you to give Mark a ‘holiday haircut’ and that you would know what was required…”

“Certainly,” Mr Kirby said, “I’ve known Mrs Legge at ‘Sea Breeze’ for more years than I care to remember and she always recommends me when her guests’ children need haircuts. Yes, I can certainly make sure Mark has a proper holiday haircut.”

Mark was starting to feel very nervous, particularly when mum announced her intention to leave him with the barber to do some shopping. “I might call in at that nice little tea-shop Mark and I passed on our way up from the sea-front…” she said.

“You take just as much time as you like Mrs Fry. You can't rush a holiday haircut and if we are finished a bit early Mark can wait with me here until you get back.”

“That’s very kind of you, Mr Kirby.” Mum turned to her son, “Now, you are to behave yourself, Mark… I don’t want to come back and find that you’ve been naughty, because then I’d have to tell Mrs Legge that you’ve let me down…”

Mark looked and felt sheepish as he promised he’d be a good boy, but he wished mum wouldn’t embarrass him like this in public. Now he was even more nervous than ever and felt incredibly self-conscious wearing just his tiny swim-trunks.

The shop bell tinkled as mum went out and Mark was left to the tender mercies of the barber and his array of combs, brushes, scissors and clippers.

“Right we are then,” Mr Kirby said cheerfully, “A summer haircut is it?”

“Yes, sir,” Mark replied. He watched Mr Kirby walk towards the barber’s chair with the wooden seat across the arms.

“Come on… up you get,” Mr Kirby said as he patted the piece of polished wood.

Mark was taken aback somewhat. He wasn’t a child: “Please, sir… I’m thirteen, sir…”

“... and still a child as far as I’m concerned,” Mr Kirby said firmly, “...and children do as they are told and sit on the child’s seat to have their holiday haircuts in my establishment.”

So Mark did as he was told and under the watchful eyes of Mr Kirby, climbed up onto the barber’s chair and was just about to turn and sit down when the barber reached for one of his brushes. Before Mark knew what was happening he felt the camel-hair brush tickling the backs of his thighs as Mr Kirby asked him whether he’d been onto the beach today.

“No, sir… no I haven’t… mum brought me straight here, sir.” Mark replied as he felt the soft bristles brushing the lower curves of his bottom that were exposed by the little trunks.

“Well it's better to be on the safe side… We don’t want boys leaving sand all over my chairs, do we?”

“No, sir… but I haven’t been on the beach yet today, sir.”

“That’s as maybe…won’t be a minute… there we are... all done. Alright, you can turn round and sit down and I’ll get you properly settled...”

Once more Mark did as he was told, but now the effect of having the backs of his legs tickled with the soft brush was making itself felt in the most embarrassing way possible for a boy, but if Mark thought he'd be able to hide the growing stiffness in his little swim-trunks, he was mistaken. Thankfully Mr Kirby turned away to fetch a barber’s cape and appeared not to notice Mark’s rather prominent boy-bulge as it developed in his trunks. Mark thought, not unreasonably, the cape would cover his embarrassing erection and give him time to get his penis under control while Mr Kirby attended to his haircut. Unfortunately for Mark that turned out not to be the case as Mr Kirby produced a small, child-sized cape that barely reached the top of Mark’s tummy! Mark was mortified. Not only did the cape not cover his now obvious bulge, but it was printed with a picture of Andy Pandy with his arm around Teddy. It looked more like a bib than a barber’s cape! To make matters worse Mr Kirby insisted that Mark sit with his feet firmly pressed against the sides of the chair and his hands gripping the chair arms. Mark tried to keep his knees together, but was overruled and told sit still for his haircut.

Mark looked at his reflection in the mirror and was mortified by what he saw. Perched on the wooden child's seat was a thirteen year old boy wearing a ludicrously infantile cape that hardly served any purpose at all other than to humiliate him. But worse still was the fact that the boy was sitting with his thighs wide apart and displaying to anyone who cared to look, a pair of very brief, brightly coloured swim-trunks made to look even smaller by the presence of an obviously aroused penis, the head of which could be seen pushing against the waistband of the little trunks.

"Now you are to keep perfectly still while I attend to your holiday haircut... I don't want any wriggling or fidgeting... understand?" Mr Kirby said sternly.

"Yes, sir..." Mark said as he gripped the chair more tightly than ever. Try as he might, he couldn't take his eyes off his reflection in the mirror. It was horrible!

"Right, we're going to start by tidying up this long straggly hair... ready?"

"Yes, sir."

“It’s perfectly obvious you haven’t had a proper schoolboy haircut for some considerable time… It’s a perfect eyesore, but we’ll do our best to smarten you up, won’t we?”

“Y-yes, sir…” Mark replied getting more nervous by the second.

“... and how are we going to that?”

“Um… with a holiday haircut, sir?”

“Yes, that’s right… with a nice smart holiday haircut.”

It was almost a relief for Mark when Mr Kirby finally turned and reached for a pair of thinning scissors and a comb. The barber placed his big hand on the crown of Mark’s head and started to comb his fine hair that had been bleached by the sun. Mr Kirby pushed Mark’s head this way and that. He was in complete control as he slowly combed the hair straight.

“Hold still…”

“Yes, sir,” Mark said as he tried to see in the mirror what Mr Kirby was doing to his hair.

Mr Kirby clicked the scissors rapidly and began to cut Mark’s hair. Soon curls of cut hair were tumbling down Mark’s front and over his shoulders. Mark was forced to squeeze his eyes shut when freshly cut hair fell over his face. He tried to blow the tickling hair from his face but was told to keep still by Mr Kirby. When Mark opened his eyes again it was to see Mr Kirby change his scissors and with these and his comb, the barber began with a different cutting technique. With his hand, Mr Kirby would position Mark’s head and after combing the hair to be shortened, would grip the hair between his fingers and with three or four snips, cut the hair. This went on for some time and each time Mr Kirby would firmly move Mark’s head into a new position.

As more and more of Mark’s sun-bleached hair tumbled down over his bare knees, Mark wondered whether he would be left with any hair on his head at all! When he was able to look down at all the hair clippings, Mark saw there was quite a little pile on the wooden seat between his legs. Mark also had hair stuck to his legs and some of it was rather ticklish. However when Mark tried to brush it away, he was told that he would be given a proper brush-down when his haircut was finished.

Mr Kirby at last turned to put down the scissors. As he did so the shop bell tinkled and a young girl stepped into the barber’s. Mark thought the girl looked familiar, but didn’t recognise her at first as one of his friends from the beach. Her name was Lucy and she was carrying a parcel.

“Sit down and I’ll be with you just as soon as I’ve finished giving this boy his holiday haircut,” Mr Kirby said and Lucy sat down to watch the barber at work.

Mr Kirby picked up his electric clippers next and once more placed his big hand firmly on Mark’s head. “Now keep nice and still… these clippers are very sharp… one slip and I could have one of your ears off.” Of course Mr Kirby wasn’t serious, but the thought of what might happen if he didn’t do as he was told was enough to make even the most truculent boy keep still while he had his hair clipped.

Mark then felt his head being pushed right forward until his chin was pressed hard against his chest. He heard a click as Mr Kirby switched on the clippers and then a loud buzzing noise filled the air as Mark felt the cold clippers being pressed against the back of his neck. Mr Kirby took his time drawing the clippers up the nape of Mark’s neck. When he reached the top the barber would flick his wrist to toss the clipped hair to one side and then move the clippers back to the base of Mark’s neck once more.

The buzzing clippers tingled and Mark fought hard to keep still. If Mr Kirby hadn’t been holding his head so tightly, Mark would have surely tried to move his head. Eventually the clippers were turned off and Mark was allowed to lift his head up. He tried to see what Mr Kirby had done with the clippers, but even when he looked at himself in the mirror and tilted his head this way and that, he couldn’t quite see what the barber had done at the back of his head.

While Mr Kirby made some adjustments to the clippers, Mark saw Lucy looking at him. He caught Lucy’s eye in the mirror just as Lucy exclaimed: “Wow! That is so short!”

“... and so it should be,” Mr Kirby said, “It’s a holiday haircut… it’s supposed to be short!”

Lucy gave an impish giggle as Mark suddenly recognised his friend from the beach. Mark was more embarrassed than ever. There he was, feeling very exposed, perched on the child’s seat having a holiday haircut wearing nothing more than a skimpy pair of boy-trunks that were quite unsuitable for wearing in the High Street, plastic beach sandals and the most childish bib-sized cape imaginable. Judging by Lucy’s exclamation his holiday haircut was going to result in him looking even more of a dork than he already felt himself to be. Why, Mark asked himself, why couldn’t Mrs Legge, Aunty Dora, keep her opinions to herself? It just wasn’t fair!

Lucy was a bit of a tomboy and liked to help Mark on the beach in his daily efforts to divert the steam. She wore her hair in a short bob style and at a glance could almost be mistaken for a boy.

Mark asked Lucy whether she had been sent for a holiday haircut.

“Not on your nelly!” Lucy laughed, “Mum sent me up to give Mr Kirby some magazines and comics my brother has finished with… thought Mr Kirby might want them,” As she said this Lucy looked up at the barber who said that was most thoughtful and told her to leave them on one of the chairs.

“Can I stay and watch?” Lucy asked.

“By all means,” Mr Kirby replied, “I’m sure when you see Mark’s holiday haircut you’ll want one too…” he added.

“Not on your…” Lucy started to say, then paused and politely continued, “... um, I don’t think so, thank you.”

Mr Kirby shrugged his shoulders and prepared to carry on with Mark’s haircut. “I think we’d better give you a bit of a brush down before we go any further,” he said

“Please, sir, can I help?” Lucy asked.

“Alright,” the barber said, “How would you like to give your friend a brush-down?”

Lucy didn’t need to be asked twice and Mr Kirby gave her the camel-hair brush which was usually used to brush cut hair from customers necks, but in the case of boys wearing only their brief swim-trunks, the brush could be used more freely. Under the barber’s instructions Lucy began and brushed Mark’s head and face.

“Don’t forget to brush above the ears…” Mr Kirby said as Lucy discovered the tickling properties of the camel-hair brush. “... that’s it… now the neck… see there’s a lot of cut hair on the shoulders… that’s good, we’ll make a barber of you someday…”

Lucy might have been enjoying herself, but that’s more than could be said of Mark. The brush tickled and of course Mark squirmed and he was told off by Mr Kirby for letting go of the arms of the barber’s chair. There was also something a little more worrying… Mark’s penis was beginning to be naughty again. Mark’s erection had, to his immense relief, subsided somewhat during the progress of his holiday haircut, but now to his horror he could feel that all too familiar tightness growing in his little swim-trunks again. It was the result of being tickled by the brush which was getting ever closer to his tiny trunks. Mark was very ticklish at the best of times, something Lucy seemed instinctively to know and she made the most of it by teasing the brush across Mark’s tummy. Mark did his best as he struggled to stay still on the child-seat, but when Lucy discovered some loose hair on Mark’s waist and tickled him there, Mark squealed and squirmed and almost jumped out of the seat.

Mark pleaded with Lucy to stop tickling him with the brush, but this only seemed to encourage Lucy to tickle him even more! Mr Kirby stood by and praised Lucy for doing a thorough job of the ‘brush-down’, just as he admonished Mark for his naughtiness. Then the blow fell as Lucy, her face the very picture of innocence, pointed at Mark’s swim-trunks and said:

“Please Mr Kirby, sir… Mark’s got something stuck in his swim-trunks…”

Mark was beside himself with embarrassment. He never expected to be betrayed by his friend from the beach.

“Looks to me as if that’s where he keeps his stick of seaside rock,” Mr Kirby said jovially.

Lucy, a picture of innocence, looked quizzically at Mr Kirby and replied, “But won’t it get all sticky in his swim-trunks?”

Mark couldn’t believe his ears! He fumed with indignation. It was perfectly obvious what his ‘stick of seaside rock’ was, but Mark couldn’t say anything to the contrary without admitting he had an erection and facing the consequences. He knew it was very naughty, very naughty indeed, to have a stiff penis and here, in the barber’s shop, was his friend deliberately getting him into trouble.

“That’s as maybe,” Mr Kirby said with an air of finality Lucy found disappointing, but which to Mark was a relief, “but I’ve got a holiday haircut to finish… Now you go and sit down again and maybe I’ll let you help me a bit more later,” he said to Lucy.

Lucy did as she was told and watched as Mr Kirby picked up the electric clippers once more. Again the barber told Mark to keep perfectly still and placed his big hand on the boy’s head. Mr Kirby’s grip was so tight that Mark couldn’t move his head anyway so the barber was able to keep Mark’s head in exactly the position he wanted. The clippers buzzed and Mark felt them as this time they were drawn up the side of his head. Over his ears the clippers went and Mark watched in the mirror as more of his hair parted company with his head and tumbled down over his shoulders.

When finally Mr Kirby turned off the clippers, Mark was told to keep still while the barber picked up a set of long, thin scissors with which to attend to his fringe.

“Eyes closed…” Mr Kirby said and Mark felt the scissors pressed against his forehead.

Snip, snip, snip… the scissors clicked and Mark was allowed to open his eyes.

“There we are all done!” Mr Kirby said as Mark looked at himself in the mirror. Mark was horrified by what he saw.

“One ‘summer haircut’… it’s loosely based on the old Buster Brown haircut, but I’ve taken some little extras from the sides and back…” Mr Kirby explained, although Mark was hardly listening, “That’ll keep you nice and cool for the rest of your stay. Now, let’s get you tidied up…”

But at this point something inside Mark snapped. Maybe it was humiliating holiday haircut; maybe it was because he was being treated like a little kid sat up on the child’s seat and dressed in nothing more than his brief swim-trunks and the utterly shameful Andy Pandy cape he’d been made to wear; maybe it was because he was in the barber’s rather than playing on the beach… or maybe it was because of the giggling coming from Lucy sat on one of the chairs by the window.

Whatever it was Mark jumped out of the child’s seat, but instead of making his escape found himself caught in Mr Kirby’s powerful grip.

“And just where do you think you’re going?” he said sternly.

“It’s not fair! It’s not fair!” Mark shouted, “Why don’t you give her a holiday haircut?!” He added, much to the amusement of Lucy who sat grinning as she watched Mark’s temper tantrum.

“Because she is a girl…” Mr Kirby pointed out.

“... but it’s not fair…” Mark repeated.

“... and your mum brought you here for a haircut…” Mr Kirby reminded Mark, “... a smart holiday haircut, your mum asked for and a smart holiday haircut is what you now have… in spite of this rude outburst!

These last words rather shook Mark. Being rude to anyone was very naughty and he suddenly had the feeling Mr Kirby wouldn’t let him off lightly. Mark was right as Mr Kirby removed the child’s seat from the chair and sat himself down. He pulled Mark round to face him.

“It’s about time you found out that I won’t tolerate rude behaviour in my shop.” And, as he finished saying these words Mr Kirby gripped Mark’s swim-trunks by the waist and had them pulled down to the boy’s knees in a jiffy. Mark was horrified, but before he could say anything he was hauled over Mr Kirby’s knees for a good, sound spanking. And a good, sound spanking is what the thirteen year old got. Mark’s legs kicked about. His swim-trunks slipped further and further down his legs until they slipped from one foot and were left flapping uselessly from the other.

Poor Mark squealed and pleaded for Mr Kirby to stop, but was simply reminded what a rude, ungrateful, naughty little boy he was. And it wasn’t long before tears were running down Mark’s face which was almost as red as his bottom by the time Mr Kirby had decided Mark had learnt his lesson. Of course Mark’s punishment wasn’t quite over and he was sent to stand in a corner of the shop with his hands on his head… sans swim-trunks!

Lucy sat and watched Mark’s spanking. It was always nice to watch a boy getting his bare bottom spanked, but all good things must come to an end as Lucy realised it was time for her to go. Her mum would be wondering where she was, so she quickly said her goodbyes and left Mr Kirby’s shop.

Hardly more than five minutes later the shop bell tinkled and Mark’s mum stepped into the barber’s. The first thing she saw were her son’s swim-trunks hanging from the back of the barber’s chair. Then she looked up to see Mark standing in the corner with his bare and very red bottom on display. She could tell from the way her son’s shoulders moved that he had been crying.

“I’m afraid Master Mark had a little temper tantrum, Mrs Fry,” Mr Kirby explained, “... but nothing that couldn't be easily dealt with.”

Mark twisted his head round and mum could see the tears trickling down her son's face. If he thought he would get any sympathy from mum, Mark was in for a disappointment.

“I've told you about this sort of behaviour before, Mark…” It was obvious Mrs Fry was very annoyed with her son and apologised to the barber for all the trouble Mark had caused him. She turned back to her son. “What will Aunty Dora have to say? Upsetting Mr Kirby like this… you’ve let yourself down… you’ve let everyone down, haven’t you?”

“... yes, mummy…”

“I think we’d better take you straight back to ‘Sea Breeze’… No playtime on the beach for you today, Mark…”

“Oh, but mum!”

“No ‘buts’, Mark… I want you to thank Mr Kirby for your nice holiday haircut and to ask him politely for your swim-trunks…”

Mark hung his head: “Yes, mummy,” he replied and turned to Mr Kirby to do what his mum asked. Mark’s swim-trunks were duly returned and the Andy Pandy cape removed. Mark pulled on the tiny trunks and carefully eased them over his sore bottom ready for mum to take him back to ‘Sea Breeze

It’s just not fair, Mark thought as mum took his hand and they left Mr Kirby’s shop.