Miss Otis Regrets..

He had visited the town library four times in a week before things escalated. Each time he waited in the wings until she was free, before handing back previously loaned books, and signing out new ones. She admitted to feeling rather taken by his appearance and manner at the time, but also very conscious that someone may also spot this activity. Until then it had been very much a transactional conversation. She didn’t like to offer an opinion on a customer’s choice of book without being asked first; it was personal as far as she was concerned.  One other thing she had noticed about him was his choice of books. It was only when she checked his reference card did see see that all of the books were to do with human biology in one form or another.
“Good morning Miss, fine day.”
“Yes it is, isn’t it just, a fine day that is.” She had stammered back.
He was tall, dressed in a light grey suit, hat and gloves. That was a year ago, almost to the day. Now, sat on a wooden bench in a small room with a single bared window, she felt not remorse, just disappointment in her behaviour. She could hear the voices outside getting louder, and it made her feel sick.

The time it took from contrived visits to the library to him tying her naked over the end of a metal bed frame and being flogged could be measured in weeks rather than months.  On reflection it shook her how quickly this man had found her hidden fantasies. It was like he had read her secret diary, if she had one that was.  When he spoke he held her gaze, never letting her out of his mental grasp; it was wonderful and so exciting.  The memory of being stripped naked in a remote country field and examined like an insect under a magnifying glass was both humiliating and exhilarating. She just could not, nor would not, say no to him.  Very slowly she became his submissive, and her life, as simple as it was previously, became smaller.  Her regular luncheon once a week continued with the lady’s guild of which she held the post of treasurer. Without fail she would attend and be fastidious in her delivery of financial accounting.  But deep down, she was always his.

He spanked her regularly, fucked her continually, and had her do things that her brain sometimes took days to work out afterwards.  He was a conductor and she an instrument. Even when in public, strolling around the town gardens after church on Sunday he made his presence felt in a wider group.
“Do not wear your under garments to church,” he ordered her one day.
She was aghast but did as she was told.  The experience was liberating and later perambulating around the gardens she could feel the slickness between her legs, and she knew that her master knew this too.

And for almost a year he stripped her bare emotionally and rebuilt her as his own play thing. That was until that fateful summer’s evening when she saw her master embracing another woman.  Exiting Lover’s Lane she saw him from her vantage point whilst having afternoon tea with her sister.  As she watched his behaviour towards this other woman, the hurt turned to anger and then to rage. She stared out of the window and as they were about to exit he whispered into the woman’s ear. She put her hand to her mouth in feint shock and then allowed him to guide her back in to the lane.

She had not really thought through the plan to confront him, but confront she would. Making her excuses she left her sister and descended the hotel stairs to the lobby.  The cloakroom attendant was absent, so she stepped through the curtain to retrieve her coat.  There was no particular order to the hanging system and her garment was not obvious thus making her increasingly more angry.  Brushing aside a large mens’ coat her hand struck something solid. Reaching into the pocket she folded her hand around a short but thick pistol. She could see the ammunition in the revolver’s cylinder, gold and shiny.  Without thinking she hid the pistol under her gown and made off for Lover’s Lane without her coat.

She found them on a bench her hands in his and about to kiss.
“How could you do this to me?” She asked.

He turned, his face an expression of surprise and panic.  This only made red mist fall in front of her eyes and created a roar in her ears. He was weak, not strong as she once believed. He was dishonest, not trustworthy as promised. It was all too much for this poor submissive to bear, her new life decimated on the rocks made of lies.  From under her velvet gown she drew the pistol and shot her lover down. Again, and again until the hammer only fell on spent cartridges.  She stood watching the smoke flow through the short barrel and into the air.  The screams of the young girl were muted by the ringing in the assassins ears.  It was only when she was seized by the arms and dragged to the jail house did the sound of chaos hit her.

As she sat there, in the jail, she realised that the treasure’s report would not be read out at luncheon today. The ladies would see her absence as very impolite without a prior apology being sent. That really was the height of rudeness she thought.

The noise of splintering wood and gun fire brought her to her senses. She stood, brushed her clothing and faced the door. More banging and the rattle of keys finally gave way to a surge of men thirsty for justice.  She was dragged from the jail, and across the open ground where a large willow tree stood.  A rope had been thrown over a large bough, one end attached to a horse in saddle and the other a noose.  She tried to walk but her legs became jelly and failed to hold her weight.  Her lynch mob carried her to the spot of execution and looped the rope around her slim fragile neck.
“Any last words before you meet your maker, woman?” Said a man elevated in importance only by mob rule.

She threw her pretty head back looking at the sky and said with a smile on her face, and the sound of a horse’s rump being slapped in her ears,
“Madam, Miss Otis regrets, she is unable to luncheon today.”

Inspired by the song written by Cole Porter in 1934.  ‘Miss Otis regrets she is unable to luncheon today’
Performed by the late Kirsty McColl and the band of the Irish Guards 1995.


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