Mail-Order Bride

Copyright 2001

by Kree
Author's note: Sometimes, just sometimes, a spanking means more than just a
Maggie leaned over a little, brushing the dust from her skirt, and stopped
only long enough to give the stage coach driver nasty looks. Did he have to
drive so quickly over what he must have known were jutted pathways? She was
used to the smooth pavement of Baltimore. The driver chuckled as he yelled
to his team "GIDDAP" while cracking his whip high in the air. She looked up
just in time to catch a mouthful of dust from the turning wheels of the

She stood, choking now, her gloved hand politely rising to cover her mouth
while she coughed. It was then, peeking over her hand, that she actually
noticed her surrounding. She choked once more, gasping for breath as she
stared at the wooden buildings, most of them looking as if the builder kept
forgetting or not wanting to use smooth wood. They were almost comical to
see. It didn't take her long to take in the entire town. There were only
seven buildings there.

She moved her head in a semi-circle while she looked across what she assumed
was supposed to be the main street. It's dirt ruts were broken only by
little mud puddles, forming a path from one store front porch to another.
Not a single stone building was in sight. Why did she ever leave Baltimore?
And for what? For this?

She sighed knowing full well why she'd left Baltimore. Here she was, 24
years old, and nowhere to go. Her parents had long since passed away,
leaving not so much as a memory for her to hold. She was so young when
they'd died, that she knew trying to remember them was useless. She had been
raised under the hands of her Grandfather who took the words of two sayings
quite seriously. She could hear his voice now, here in the middle of

"Children should be seen and not heard, Margaret" he would remind her too
many times, never once using the nickname she preferred. "Spare the rod,
spoil the child" he would roar to all his cigar stinking friends often found
around his dinner table. She hated him while she was growing up and she
hated him now, even in his death. He gave her no wonderful childhood
memories. Instead, he gave her a life of rules and consequences for breaking
those rules. Humiliation whenever he had a dinner party with his crude
comments about her lack of intelligence and later, her inability to secure a
good marriage. Her dependence on servants to do everything for her. She
cringed remembering it all while she stood in the middle of nowhere.
She remembered knowing he was right that she had failed to secure a good
marriage. Grandfather's idea of a good marriage was to one of his cronies.
Maggie shivered remembering them all. Wrinkled old men that never failed to
try and grab her buttocks when her Grandfather wasn't looking. Once, she'd
made the fatal mistake of informing her Grandfather of this and letting him
know in no uncertain terms that she would not stand for it any longer. He
obliged her request by turning her over his knees, lifting her dress high
over her waist and switching her naked bottom for lying to him!

Maggie also knew he was just as wrong in referring to her as lacking any
kind of intelligence. She perused every book he held in his cold and dreary
library and her hunger for knowledge served her well. She had collected and
saved her money for years, knowing her miser Grandfather would not leave her
well off without what he considered a proper husband. She planned and
learned and finally dreamed of the wild west. It was described so
romantically in the novels. Tall rugged men, slender warm women. All working
together side by side harmoniously to tame a wild country. She was so ready
when she'd found the newspaper advertisement.

"MAIL ORDER BRIDE" the advertisement had begun. It went on to announce that
there were many eligible bachelors in the west looking for hard working
women, willing to marry and share ownership in land secured. Share
ownership. She'd reveled in that part and immediately wrote a letter to the
agency along with information about herself. They had promptly replied and
told her there was a candidate in Dalta, Montana. Montana! She knew Montana
had grown since the gold rush back in 1862 began and that it had only become
a territory in 1864. Through her studies, she'd learned that by 1870, the
cattle industry began to flourish using the open-range method. Here it was
1873 and still this land was untamed. Oh she missed Baltimore already!
She shrugged her shoulders and glanced once more at the paper held in her
gloved hand. Michael Thompson. It sounded like such a normal name. How bad
could this be? She looked over the town once more wondering where he was.
His letter promised he would meet her at the stagecoach and that he would
bring a minister so they'd be "right and proper" as he called it. She began
to get more nervous as she waited. Although this Michael had paid for her
passage, what funds she'd saved had all been used for purchases to bring
with her. There was nothing left.

Her nerves soon turned to despair. She'd been tricked. After all of her
investigating, she'd been tricked into coming here and now she was left with
no money, no home, nowhere to go. She became angry now. Angry that she
hadn't seen through this trickery and angry that she was now exactly what
her Grandfather always said she was. She felt completely lacking of any
intelligence and wondered what to do now.

"There y'are Darlin!" She heard a voice boom from behind her. "Sorry I'm
late but Preacher Man here didn't believe I was gettin me a bride! Stand
right here next to me Darlin and we'll start right off!"

Before she had a chance to open her mouth, this brute was already shouting
"I DO" so the whole town heard and began to gather around them. When the
preacher turned to Maggie and asked her what her name was, she was

"Margaret Watson" Michael shouted before she had a chance to gather her
senses. The preacher continued and paused, looking at her. "Go on Darlin,
say your I do's!"

"I ... I ..." She was so shocked at the rough manner of this man that she
wasn't sure what she wanted. She stared at the preacher, then at Michael,
then back at the preacher. She felt Michael's hands hold her face and turn
her back towards him. His face registered then and she found herself staring
into the most wonderful eyes she'd ever seen. He moved his face closer to
her and kissed. He held her lips to his for so long that she forgot to
breathe and let out a sigh when he finally released her.

"Say your I do's" he whispered.

She stared at him and he smiled at her. "I do" she said.

"There ya go Preacher Man" Michael said shaking the preacher's hand
boisterously. He turned and acknowledged the crowd with an over exaggerated
bow then turned to Maggie. "All right then" he told her. "Let's go!"
She stared at him. This was it? This was her grand wedding? Where was the
wedding gown? Where were the flowers? Where in God's name was the church????
Michael stopped and turned to stare at her, looking confused. "What?"

"That's it?" She asked incredulously?

"What's it?"

"That was the grand wedding you wrote to me about?"

"Hell yeah Darlin. See?" He turn and moved his arm to sweep towards the
people standing there. "All fourteen members of Dalta, Montana attended and
you want more?"

She stared at him, her anger returning and she came close to stamping her
feet, but noticed the thirteen other residents of Dalta staring at her
waiting for her answer. Michael stood waiting as well, his arms crossed and
a crooked smile on his face. "He knew" she thought to herself. He knew this
would happen and he knew what her reaction would be and he KNEW she'd have
no choice but to accept it before the whole town. She stomped her feet then,
walking right past him, ignoring him completely. She paused, turned around,
crossed her arms and said "Well? Let's go then!"

He chuckled before walking towards her. She really was a pretty little lady
when her face got all red like that. She made him feel good to be alive and
good that he'd made this choice. He swooped her off the ground and carried
her to the waiting wagon. Michael helped her climb up, then moved to put her
luggage in the back. He lifted her trunks as if they were simple sacks of
sugar and she shuddered a little, watching him. He climbed to sit beside her
and grabbing the reins, gave a "GIDDAP". The wagon moved forward and the
couple began their journey home.

The ride took well over an hour and she took advantage of the time, and
watched the scenery. It seemed like forever before fences came into view.
She realized he wasn't much of a conversationalist. Far off into the
horizon, cattle rested and grazed.

"Yours?" she asked her new husband beside her.

"Yep" was all he answered.

Content for the time being that he really did know how to speak, she watched
for signs of the grand home he promised her in his letters. She saw what
looked like nothing more than a shack and assumed it was a place for men to
stay while caring for cattle. She looked at him, surprised, when he turned
the wagon off the road, heading straight for the shack. "All right" she told
herself. "A grand tour." She waited patiently while he pulled the reins,
stopping the horses near the front door. She stared at the shack. Two
windows graced the log building on either side. Wooden flaps held up with
sticks were the only substitute for window panes that she could see. She
knew the winters were harsh here and wondered how cold the men must be when
the snows fly.

He jumped down, almost grinning and offered his hands to help her down. They
stood side by said while he seemed to be waiting for her reaction.

"Very nice" she told him. "Now could we please go home. I need to wash this
grit off me from my travels."

He stood, looking hurt, staring at her.

"Ya'are home Darlin" he told her. "Come on, I'll show you inside." Before
she could protest, she found herself in his strong arms being carried inside
the shack.

"Nooooooooo! You put me down this instant." she shouted at him. She began
kicking her legs and using her gloved fists to punch his chest. He stood,
looking down at this woman, no longer calm and impressed. Instead she was
attempting to tear him apart.

"You gave me your word" She shouted at him. "You promised me a grand wedding
and grand home and you lied! YOU LIED TO ME!" He dropped her then, her words
cutting into him like none of her punches had been able to do. She hit the
ground with a thud and sat, her bottom in the dirt, staring up at this man
with a scowl on his face.

"If there's one thing I don't do Darlin, it's lie!" he told her bending over
to get closer to her face. "I never lie and I NEVER break a promise. My word
is my word. I promised you a grand wedding and that was the grandest wedding
Dalta, Montana has ever seen! I promised you a grand home and this" he
emphasized by pointing his finger at the shack. "THIS is the grandest home
in these parts and took six men two weeks to build for YOU!"
She stared hard at him then, realizing he'd really done his best to try and
impress her. She tried. Maggie tried with all her heart to be impressed but
it just wouldn't work.

"If that's what you call grand, then you have a lot to learn about treating
a lady!" she yelled back. She had to tilt her had back to look up at him.
Sitting on the ground on her bottom was not the greatest of ways to prove
she was, indeed, a lady, but for now, it would have to do.
Michael straightened then and smiled. He was so handsome when he did that
but Maggie didn't trust that smile.

"When I find a lady in my home instead of spoiled brat, then" he paused to
lean down close to her for the last time and whispered. "Only then will I
learn how to treat a lady. Until such time, I am QUITE aware of how to treat
a brat."

Michael straightened and walked away leaving Maggie to fume on the ground.
He stopped, turned to her and spoke once more.

"You'll find everything you need inside Darlin. I expect dinner by sundown.
And if ya have any thoughts of leaving Maggie, I have to warn you. This is
Indian territory. They are dangerous and they don't like us settling here.
Stay near the cabin and you'll be safe. Do ya understand me Darlin?"

Maggie nodded at him then watched him climb on the wagon and move towards
the barn. She sat until he was out of her sight then rose, dusted herself
off and decided she should at least inspect the inside. Once inside, she was
even more disgusted. She was met with a dirt floor, one small wooden table,
two straight back chairs, a dry sink and some cupboards, and a large bed set
off to one corner. Maggie decided he would be comfortable enough sleeping in
the barn and ignored the bed while she inspected.

She rambled through the cupboards and since she'd never cooked a meal in her
life, had no idea where to start. She decided instead to make the cabin a
home. She'd come here for a new life and Maggie looked around knowing this
cabin needed new life! She moved around, unpacking some of her belongings,
giving her one room home a feminine touch. She'd unpacked curtains she
brought with her and placed them over the crude openings. She covered the
small table with the lace table cloth and placed her favorite vase in the
center. She began to clean and threw out all those items she determined were
unnecessary for proper living. She threw the bear throw off the bed left it
out on the ground in front of the cabin and replaced it with her lace
coverlet, placing pillows to offset the pale green. When she was having a
hard time seeing because daylight was waning, she walked out of the cabin
and sat on the little bench to wait for him. He would be impressed now. NOW,
it was a home.

Michael walked in from the fields, his naked chest glowing with the sweat
that gathered there. She did a little intake of breath watching him move,
then closed her eyes to settle herself. He moved closer to her and bent to
kiss her forehead before heading into the cabin.

"I hope it's a fine meal you've prepared Darlin! I'm hungry enough to eat a

Just as he stepped to the door, the bear rug crumpled on the ground caught
his eye. "Maggie?"

She followed his eyes and answered his question sweetly.

"Yes Darlin" she snarled. "I've made changes to OUR home. I threw away all
those nasty looking items." She pointed to the pile of junk and continued.
"I think you'll be quite satisfied." She sat on the bench, arranging her
skirt prettily and waited for his comments to flow.

He walked into the cabin and what Maggie heard then could only be described
as a roar. She heard him rummaging around and heard items being picked up
then replaced. She rose from the bench and stood facing the door waiting for
him to come and glorify her hard work.

Michael walked back outside and ignoring her, walked over to the pile she'd
discarded. He picked up one item after another, calmly explaining it's need
here in the wilderness and one by one replaced them where Maggie had found
them. She stood gaping at him and when he picked up the bear rug, she could
be silent no longer.

"THAT" she said pointing to the rug. "THAT is NOT going into MY home!"

"THIS" he said speaking quietly. "THIS will save you from freezing your
little bottom off during the cold winters. I don't think you understand what
life is like here, Maggie. It's crude and you have to do for yourself to
survive. All of these things will do that for us. They will help us survive!
Now you stay right there. There is also the matter of no dinner waiting for
me that we need to discuss."

"Ohhhhhhhhhhh!" Maggie stood stomping her foot while he placed the ugly fur
back inside the cabin. She was pacing back and forth talking to herself when
he walked over to her, lifted her upside down under his arm, then sat on the
bench and plopped her unceremoniously over his knee.
She felt him lift her skirts and squirmed and wiggled on his lap, trying to
push herself off.

"No Maggie Darlin" he told her again quietly. "You have no idea of the
hardships out here and you're determined to do things your way. You've gone
and acted like a spoiled brat since the minute you arrived and as your
husband, it's my right to treat you like a spoiled brat. You refuse to
listen to my words, so I think it's only fitting I find some other way to
get through that stubborn head of yours."

He began spanking her then, right on her petticoat covered bottom. They
weren't hard stings but they were enough to get her attention. Each spank
was followed with words explaining this strange new world she lived in.
Maggie remembered her grandfather then, and knew in her heart she'd
exchanged one overpowering man for another. She refused to give in this

WHACK! "You will not throw away what you don't like. What you throw away may
someday save your life."

WHACK! "You will do your share of the work here. This is a grand place to
live and raise children but it does not come easy."

WHACK! "And you will have dinner on the table when I come home. I work hard
Maggie and I will give you the world but I expect obedience on this!"
Maggie kicked then, kicked hard and yelled at him to stop. He ignored her
and continued to explain. She hardly heard the words. She was face down,
staring at the dirt ground and was once more, the young girl with no

WHACK, WHACK, WHACK. He let his hand rest on her bottom while the stings
settled in. WHACK, WHACK, WHACK. "This land is no place for spoiled brats
Maggie. You won't survive that way."

Maggie lay face down and started to cry. His large hand covered her whole
bottom in one swoop and try as she might to ignore him, his words did indeed
penetrate her brain. She finally lay crying quietly while he spanked her and
understood his message. She no longer thought of her grandfather. Her
grandfather hadn't explained anything to her. She lay there, humiliated, and
knew her husband was right.

He stopped then, turned her over and held her close on his lap. She hugged
him and didn't know why. She just knew he'd made her understand where she
was and what it took to remain there.

"I'm sorry" she whispered into his neck. "I'm sorry and I'll try and

He smoothed her hair and kissed her forehead again.

"I know Maggie. I just needed you to realize how dangerous this land can
be." He held her face in his hands while he continued. "We can make it you
and I. I'm not disappointed in my choice of a bride but we'll need to work
together to make it work. Are you willing Maggie?"

Maggie nodded and sniffled before talking to him again. Her grandfather
hadn't hugged her. Never. Maggie knew then that Michael hadn't wanted to
spank her. She knew then how hard it had been and the seriousness of where
she was. She leaned her head back, looked deep into Michael's eyes, and
started crying all over again.

"What?" Michael asked her. "Why are you crying now? I didn't spank you that
hard Darlin."

"Nnnooooooo ..." Maggie answered, her face once more buried into Michael's
neck. "That's nnnot it."

Confused, Michael put his hands on Maggie's shoulders and pushed her back
enough to see her face.

"What Maggie? What?" He asked.

"But .. bbbutt I don't know how to cook."

Michael laughed then. He laughed loud and long, hugging Maggie so hard, she
thought she would break.

"Then it's time ya learned eh Darlin?" He picked her up and carried her into
the cabin. She snuggled against him. This man, this man who'd just turned
her upside down and paddled her bottom as if she was his daughter instead of
his wife. This man who'd introduced her to a world so foreign to her, she
knew it would take years to understand. This man, who made her feel safe and
protected. This man, who made her insides melt just by smiling at her. This
man, was her husband.

Continue on to part 2

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