© Copyright 2014 - Jackie Rabbit - Used by permission
Storycodes: M+/f+; jail; farm; naked; harness; bitgag; ponygirls; cart; display; punish; susp; cuffs; gag; cons/reluct; X
Beth heard the men climb into the wagon, but she dared not look back. The driver took up the slack in her reins and shook them sharply moments later, it wasn't a violent motion so much as a precise one, but one he apparently didn't want her to misunderstand either. An equally sharp "get along" was commanded at the same time, and with the earlier warning of the driver fresh in her mind she pulled forward.
The second girl in line however fought her to a standstill, more as a reflex action to keep her balance than intentional belligerence.
Beth's harness was drawn tight around her tiny body with the effort, and she quickly realized she couldn't overpower the larger girl, but would have to out think her instead.
Beth was determined to avoid the whip if she could, she had playful experiences with them once, but that was in foreplay with her wealthy and creative man friends who's generosity financed her education. She was certain this man wasn't interested in playing at the moment, despite his earlier appreciative glances. She also suspected she was little more than a beast of burden to him, and as a further complication, her burden wasn't where it needed to be. She heard the whip crack near her shoulder, and was determine not to let the other girls get her marked up, at least not without a fight.
Beth stopped her forward struggle abruptly, and the girl behind her stumbled backward as Beth anticipated, and the others had no choice but to followed suit. Beth then threw what little weight she had forward with all her might, and the second girl in line stumbled forward, pulling the others with her. The stubborn girls couldn't fall forward tethered as they were to the large cart, and in an ugly and chaotic manor the wagon lurched forward for the first time under the power of it's new team.
The driver was impressed, a mere seven seconds by his pocket watch, and certainly a record. Getting a team to move the wagon the first time usually took a fair amount of coercion with the whip, and sometimes all afternoon long if the girls were stubborn enough. This driver had a fair amount of experience breaking in new teams, and by his experienced eye this team had great potential, as some of the girls were quite strong. He also felt one of his men slap him on the shoulder when the wagon first moved, and they shared a look between them confirming his decision to put the smallest girl I the lead.
There were different schools of thought on the subject, but he had been at Grandview since the beginning and had an uncanny ability to pick the best lead girl, usually on the first try.
The driver became lost in his deep thoughts as he mindlessly drove the wagon toward Grandview, he had made this trip many times and the familiarity of it allowed his mind to wander.
When he first started working with the girls several years ago he was nearly overcome with lusty desires of the flesh, but within days they became no more than naked stock animals that a judge decided should learn some discipline and humility. He was a simple man, but he still saw the importance of his job. If he treated the girls as less than human work animals, statistically the justice system would never see them again.
It was slightly more difficult to detach himself from the especially attractive ones, like his present lead girl, but in treating all of them harshly he was ensuring the effectiveness of the program for her as well. Grandview was like cod liver oil, nasty and distasteful to experience, and if it didn't cure what was deficient, it would at least stop you from demonstrating those symptoms again for fear of another dose. It also seemed there were just a few judges that sentenced nearly all the girls to Grandview, and the cynical part of him wondered if any money changed hands as he was always suspicious of city people.
Every now and then he thought it was too bad there was a strict "no touch" policy with the girls, despite his pretty and proper wife waiting at home. These were after all bad girls, who had done things bad enough to land them at Grandview. Girls like these would willingly do all sorts of bad things just to get some preferential treatment, and the young man in him was tempted. There were many things his proper wife wouldn't even discuss, let alone try, and he was certain that this group of misfits had no such paradigms about proper behavior. He thought if they had, he likely wouldn't be looking at them. He had given his word to his employer that he wouldn't touch them though, and for him that was a far more binding thing than a signature on any contract.
The driver knew the girls would soon have frustrations and desires of their own, and they usually had a way of working things out between themselves in that regard, but it was still amusing to watch. The first time he saw that happen covertly through their bunk room window he nearly broke his word with his employer his desires were so inflamed. The larger girls had ganged up on the smaller ones after their daily shower, and they used them for their entertainment in highly creative ways. It was very erotic to watch, just as the other drivers had suggested it would be, and after that show he went home to his lovely wife and ravaged her.
All of the men's wives understood that it could be tempting to work around the nearly naked girls despite their promise not to touch them, and each of their wives were in the habit of bringing down lunch to their men as often as possible. Some of the wives would even run the girls as their men enjoyed an extended lunch break in the shade, and they weren't the least bit gentle about it either...
The wagon slowly picked up speed with Beth encouraging the others to follow her, the whip so far not touching her bare flesh, but used several times on her wide numbered harness straps with incredible skill by the driver. It had the desired effect, not only motivating her on with the sharp crack of leather on leather, but letting the other girls hear what could be coming their way. Some of the others still weren't pulling to their full potential, and the driver singled each of them out next, but judging from the yelps Beth heard behind her, not quite so carefully aimed as hers.
The driver drove them right through town, and with their bare feet the girls were fortunate to be able to keep the slow jogging pace Beth set. All the shopkeepers and their customers came out to watch this newest team's humiliating drive through town, and Beth kept a mental record of the events for her later story. She heard the comments clearly enough, most of the men focused on the larger girls behind her and their wildly gyrating breasts. The ladies in attendance just seemed silently amused by the whole event, or perhaps it was even schadenfreude, she thought darkly.
Beth was daydreaming as well, but in her case it was about receiving her Pulitzer, but she was drawn back into the present when her driver tugged firmly on her left rein and commanded "haw". Beth was confused as the dirt road in front of her was as straight as could be. She continued on for another few moments before her left rein was pulled more sharply, actually turning her head in the direction the driver wanted her to go. A second and much more firm "HAW" was heard, followed by the sting of the whip on her right flank. The sting forced her on instinct to veer away from the pain, and she drove the team off of the dirt road and onto the grass as the driver intended.
The grass was far more gentle on the ladies bare feet than the dirt road was, and Beth came to the conclusion that her driver had their best intentions at heart. She found herself on a collision course with a stand of hardwood trees in the meadow they were jogging through, which she didn't alter in the slightest even though common sense dictated otherwise. The sting of her last mistake still throbbing at her side.
Once under the shade of the tree canopy the driver tugged Beth's right rein and said lightly "gee", his commands much easier to hear with the wagon's softer travel over the grass of the meadow. Beth now understood three commands, and she hoped there weren't any more painful lessons in her immediate future. Under the canopy of trees was the most perfect swimming hole she had ever seen, and when her driver pulled both reins and said "stop", she was only too happy to comply.
The sweat rolled off of the girls the moment they stopped despite their exposed pale skin, and each was unhitched by the men and tossed into the cool pond by their harnesses, Beth being first as she was in the lead. When all of the girls were in the water the driver told them they had nearly set a record, and as a reward they could cool off in the pond and wash up their stinky selves before lunch. Bars of soap were tossed in as well, and what emerged both looked and smelled much more human, except they would never be treated that way intentionally at Grandview.
Both their semi permanent numbered harnesses riveted closed about their bodies, and their lack of clothing separated them from the proper ladies of the town. All of the teams swam and bathed in the pond regularly, not as a reward, but to ensure their leather harnesses shrunk to form fitting perfection. A loose harness would cause motion blisters and possible infection, and a snug one nearly impossible to remove without sharp tools the girls would never have access to.
Beth was grateful for the bath, and the lunch that followed, and she was already writing her awarding winning expose in her mind even before she and the others were hitched back up to the wagon. The girls were walked the rest of the way to Grandview at an easy pace, and this time there was no resistance to Beth's direction either.
Grandview was a former plantation house surrounded by fields in need of plowing and planting, or so it looked to Beth who had limited experience with where food actually came from. The grand manor house itself looked as it could be a fine place to spend the summer, but her accommodations looked to be the former servant shacks far to the rear of the estate. There were four long buildings in a row, simple clapboard structures that none the less looked neat and tidy, no doubt maintained that way by the girls during their unharnessed time. The other teams could just be seen in the distant fields pulling farm implements, but at their distance it was impossible to see how, or even if they were dressed.
The girls were unhitched and sent inside, and the driver pointed with his whip to a schedule on their door for their activities, as well as several other cautionary notices about the consequences of violating Grandview's rules. The symbolism was clear to Beth, ignore these, and get this! Each activity would be preceded by a series of bells, much like a dinner bell, but in a distinctive pattern. The notices also reminded the girls that there was no talking anywhere but their bunk room, not that it should have been necessary as it was implied by their very treatment. A driver might talk to his animals, but he never expected them to talk back.
Their bunkhouse was a simple affair, ten cots and a large table to eat at, and again Beth got first pick as she was first unhitched. She realized still again what a huge privilege it was to be lead girl, and she didn't want to do anything to loose that position. The second their door was closed however, the girls cornered her and wanted to know why she was so special.
She told them she had no idea, but for the first time that she could remember she was truly frightened. These girls were tough, and had size and strength over her, not to mention defiant courage and a certain disdain for authority. Beth realized at that moment that she had more to fear than just the staff and their listed punishments on their door.
A farrier was brought in by the driver before the girls could finish their discussion, and over the course of the next few hours each of the girls was fitted with wide and tall lace up boots. Each had an iron shoe on the ball of their foot, much like a small horse shoe, and proven over the last hundred and fifty years as the best for traction in the dirt and mud. The boots weren't new, but cleaned up used ones from the last group of ladies to leave Grandview only days earlier. The man watched each girl walk in their new "shoes" with his experienced eyes, and made adjustments where necessary.
The bell announced dinner, and the girls silently walked to the mess hall in line behind Beth in their new shoes, and took up position behind all the other girls just in from the fields and covered in dirt. Each was similarly dressed, (or undressed), as Beth and the others were, except it was easy for her to tell what group had been at Grandview the longest. Some of the girls were quite muscular, and their skin had developed a deep dark color from their exposure to the sun, blending their brown leather harnesses and naked skin seamlessly.
Their hair in many cases was also lighter than Beth might expect, but without seeing the girls pre Grandview she had no way to be sure. Unless of course there was an unnaturally high percentage of fair haired girls sent to Grandview, but that of course begged the question as to why? In any event Beth thought the contrast looked good on the girls, despite the implied class distinction of tan manual laborers prevalent in the city.
The bell announcing their first full day of work at Grandview came much sooner than Beth and the others thought possible, as none of the girls slept well in their unfamiliar beds. It was still dark out as the girls took care of things before the day started, and nine of them lined up in front of their shack as instructed. The other shack's girls lined up similarly in silent anticipation, but when Beth's driver arrived to walk them to their breakfast his stern stare at her let her know something was instantly wrong.
One of the girls had either escaped during the night, or slept in. The former meant instant relocation to a maximum security facility once captured, and the latter was a ten lashing first offense. Beth felt sorry for her, and if she had noticed her missing in the darkness would have woken her up, but that was her problem.
The driver bellowed and stomped angrily into the bunk room and dragged the sleepy girl out by her harness, and other men descended on the scene when they heard the commotion in the still early morning air. A short chain was handed to the driver and attached to the poor girls front harness ring as she was dragged barefoot before all the teams, no doubt reminding them of the consequences of breaking the rules.
Beth was shocked to have the other end of the short chain attached to her harness though, and both girls were dragged to a monster sycamore tree as the entire camp was made to follow. The chain was attached to a stout rope already hanging down from the huge tree's lowest limb, and as both girls were forced face to face the rope was drawn up until their feet just swung clear of the dirt. Their harnesses dug in, but easily supported the girls. Manacles were used to secure the girls wrist to wrist, and ankle to ankle, and each was gagged with a rolled piece of leather, not for silence, but to prevent them from injuring themselves.
The men drew the two girls up high off the ground, right where all the others could see them twist and spin as the large rope set to the load suspended beneath it. This was the part of the job that their driver hated the most. Breaking in a new team was fun, and almost always presented a challenge of some kind, and working the teams could be rewarding as well. Some of the earlier drivers got off on punishing the girls, and truth be told, some of the girls got off on being punished. Those men didn't usually last long at Grandview, and the present staff was actually pretty good, all things considered.
Both girls were terrified, but Beth still didn't know what she had done wrong to land her where she was. The other teams were brought to the cook shack for their breakfast as the driver intended to take care of his girls privately, it was a tradition with him. When everybody was out of sight he spoke to both girls quietly, "Do this to me again and I might not be so merciful."
Beth heard the thick leather strap sing through the air, and she closed her eyes tightly in anticipation of the horror of it's impact. The crack of it's impact was deafening, but she didn't feel it's pain, nor her companions reaction. Both girls were shocked to see the trunk of the sycamore instead receive the drivers blow, but the others inside the cook shack couldn't know that.
The next shot was much the same, except this time Beth screamed into her gag loud enough for the others to assume she was getting the tar beat out of her. Her companion emulated her actions, and twenty lashes while hung from a tree never felt so good. The girls would hang together until the others ate, but a skipped meal was far better than the alternative.
As the girls hung and slowly twisted together, Beth became aware of her arousal. This was far closer than she might like to admit to something she had done once, but she still had no idea why hanging suspended breast to breast with another girl should excite her so...
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story continues in The Investigative Reporter 3: Discoveries