"Ohhhh," Neal woke up holding his head groaning. He opened his eyes and saw concerned ones staring back at him. It was Cookie sitting in a rocking chair next to his bed.
"Here take this," she said as she handed him a glass of Gatorade. "That will help you recover…now drink the whole glass."
Neal nodded and took a few sips before lying back down immediately as the room began to spin and closed his eyes.
"I've placed a small waste basket next to your bed if you need it and can't get to the bathroom quick enough," Carolyn said quietly as she got up to leave. "You rest and I'll be back in a few minutes."
The rest of the morning was spent as Carolyn forced him to drink fruit juice and Gatorade as a means to recovering from his hangover. She also brought him an asparagus smoothie that seemed to help best of all and all too soon he was over it and facing his grandmother's displeasure of his wrong decision of the night before and got drunk. He was feeling sorry for himself when Peter dropped by to check on him and he remembered something Carolyn had said earlier on New Year's Eve.
"Peter, what did your Mom mean about asking you about how she feels about getting drunk?" Neal asked as he was waiting for his grandmother to attend to him for his recent behavior.
Peter looked up and grimaced as he remembered; something that Neal noticed at once. "When I turned eighteen my brother Tom took me out to celebrate my birthday and we eventually ended up at the local restaurant and Tom ordered a beer for me. He ordered two for himself but he gave me one of them to drink. He had made an arrangement with a classmate who worked there to keep bringing him beer….and he would share them with me. He had only intended for us to have a few…to get "happy" but not drunk 'cause he knew how Mom felt about me drinking. Dad allowed me to have the occasional beer and while Mom wasn't happy about it she didn't give me any grief either just as long as I did my drinking at home. Tom thought he could convince my father not to punish us if we only had a couple," Peter explained as he paused.
"Only you drank more than two beers," Neal said as he filled in the blank.
Peter nodded. "We were having such and good time talking and drinking that we soon found ourselves too drunk to drive and then to make matters worse Sheriff Will Adams walked in and caught me drinking. He was a good friend of my Dad's and he knew I was too young. He could have thrown us both in jail to let our father bail us out but he didn't. He just took us home. He knew that Mom and Dad would punish us worse than he and that their lesson would stick with us longer."
"Your Mom spanked you?"
"Nope my Dad took his belt to us after we had sobered up…and it was a week before either of us could sit comfortably again," Peter winced in spite of himself.
"He whipped both of you?" and at Peter's nod Neal continued to ask, "But why Tom; he was of age?"
"But since I was with him he was responsible for me…what if something had happened and I had been hurt because of the drinking or the fact that he was too drunk to get me help…no my folks didn't like that in the least and he got a whipping even worse than mine. I tell you something though, neither one of us ever got drunk again except that one time a few months ago…it was the weekend of my father's funeral. We drank then to console our loss and drove up a bit tipsy and Mom wasn't happy. I think that was the last time she ever used her hairbrush on both of us at home. El will tell you that she didn't let the fact that I was grown stop her from correcting our mistake of getting drunk and her finding out about it," Peter remembered with a frown.
"Then she had better never find out about the time we got drunk together at June's or about all of the alcohol we consumed while figuring out the music box when you gave me card blanche' on my life of crime," Neal said as Peter shouted
"Peter Burke did I hear Neal right and you both have been drinking to the access…again. We will be having a long discussion about this once I've taken care of Neal's latest misbehavior," Carolyn said sternly to her son who only groaned in response.
"Neal, dear…are you feeling better?" Carolyn asked the younger man.
Neal considered lying but remembered what happened the last time he tried that with Cookie and reluctantly nodded, "Yes ma'am…I'm over the effects of my drinking binge."
"Then come with me," Carolyn ordered as she headed upstairs to Neal's bedroom.
A moment later Neal followed; he walked slowly as if he was walking to his doom. Peter got up to leave when he heard his mother's voice floating down from above, "You had better still be sitting in my kitchen when I return Peter!"
When Neal arrived he found Carolyn standing with the Santa paddle in her hand. "I had hoped I wouldn't have to break this in so early in the new year Neal, but your decision last night has decided it for me. I want you to drop your pants and bend over this desk," she ordered watching Neal's expression change from dread to horror as he realized without his pants on to protect his butt that this was going to hurt even worse.
"We can make it bottomless if you do not hurry," Carolyn suggested sternly.
The threat did its job as Neal hurried to lower his pants and get into position.
He waited anxiously for the first lick to fall and was startled when he felt her hand on his back. "Calm down, Neal…I'm only punishing you for your wrong decision of last night…I will still love you once it is over with," she said gently before bringing the paddle down hard on his backside and causing Neal to cry out with a loud "OWWWW!" The licks and cries proceeded quickly after that as Carolyn proceeded to heat his backside up to inferno temperature in a short time and when he didn't think he could take another lick the paddling was over and he was pulled up into a hug….a moment later he felt his pants pulled back up and he hissed as the material made contact with his enflamed backside.
"It's over now dear. Please try and make the rest of this new year to be paddle free," she whispered in his ear as she helped him to his bed. "Now you rest; I'll be back to check on you later," she added as she kissed him on the top of his head before leaving him to head downstairs.
Neal carefully removed his jeans and replaced them with an old and loose pair of sweat pants before climbing onto his bed to rest on his stomach. He closed his eyes and was almost asleep when he heard a loud "OWWWW!" from below. He closed his eyes again and smiled knowing that he wasn't the only one to experience a New Year's paddling that day.
"HAPPY NEW YEAR"
A/N: Sorry I didn't make New Year's day for the day after isn't bad...