Fields stretched from horizon to horizon, some of them still green, others already harvested. The landscape itself was almost flat, rolling gently, so you could see for miles, in the distance you could see farmers and farmer boys working. On a track of dirt between two empty lots, no crops in them just some small green weeds that might or might not grow into something later, a girl grabbed hold of the hem of her dress. “But there isn’t even anything here to steal.” She stated the obvious. “I was on my way to the farmhouse.” She had seen it from the road, just past this one field, the track of dirt leading straight to it. When the farmer had come out of his stables she had even approached him directly, unaware of his anger. Still, as she offered her explanation she raised her dress in obedience to the farmer’s wishes. Her last experience just a week ago had taught her not to delay with excuses. The mud of the field covered her bare feet and splatters of it reached all the way to her knees, she was naked from her toes to her waist, nothing marring her soft pale skin where the mud could not reach. A cool wind blew across the fields, passing between her legs. The girl could not remember ever being this exposed, a deep blush spread across her cheeks as she looked around her, the men in the distance continued working without pause. The black dress, hoisted above her hips, was all she was wearing, one of only two items she owned, the dress and the leather strap the farmer held in his hand.
“Young lady, there is a perfectly good road that lies just two fields ahead and would have led you straight to our front door. Maybe you’re telling me the truth, maybe you really are just a silly girl that made a mistake. But stealing or no stealing, you’re still trespassing and mistakes have to be paid for.” He had walked around her and the small leather strap landed with a loud thwack across her bottom, the girl bit her lip and groaned softly. She clenched her teeth as the farmer repositioned himself behind her, he was taking his time, enjoying the view she thought with a blush. Once more the strap flayed her bottom and she yelped in pain. He let it sink in as a cool breeze from the open fields stroked her stinging bottom and then once more the strap landed replacing the cold with heat. She had promised herself to keep quiet, afraid to call attention to her embarrassing situation, but she couldn’t, she squealed with the effort of keeping her hands in front of her, keeping her dress out of his way.
But the farmer handed her back her strap after those three strokes and told her to cover herself. She let the dress fall and felt the rough wool chafe against her bottom, only three smacks, but it still hurt, she could see in her mind the broad red stripe the it must have left behind. But only three, she wondered why he had stopped, which was the usual punishment, the spanking she had received but a couple of days ago, or just these few hits with the strap? She did not have much experience as a gaeth after all.
Being a gaeth was al she knew was true about herself. Still, it was hard for her to accept the rules that came with being who she was. She had no memories older than two weeks, no recollections of her past before waking up alone, in the hay of an unfamiliar stable. But she was wearing the black dress, cheap wool that fitted her body snugly with the leather strap, hung from a metal ring sewn on at the hip. The dress symbolized what she was, did she really want to remember her past? Did she want to remember who had turned her into this person, her parents who had sold her to the people? They probably had their reasons, no-one would choose this life for their daughter, but sometimes it was the only way to get out of debt.
Selling you to the people they called it, but in reality they sold you to the Perchen. They called themselves a religious order, perhaps they were, but what they definitely were is rich. They offered to pay your debts for you, all of them, if you had a son or daughter to join their order. You didn’t really join them however, instead you became gaeth and you had to serve the people. All your possessions were taken from you and you would be dressed in black and given a small leather strap to hold.
In the religious tales told by the Perchen, gaeth were the children of the gods. They were on earth to serve the people. Their rules were paradoxical, like so often with the rules of the gods; a gaeth is free, they can go where-ever they want, but at the same time they have to serve anyone that asks or sets a task for them; they have no possession that was not given to them by the Perchen, but after finishing a desired task, the one who set it is obliged to offer them food and a place to rest; no harm is allowed to a gaeth by law, yet they are but children and like children they can be punished, the leather strap is a symbol for the only punishment fitting a gaeth, they are but children and a spanking is the only way for them to learn from their mistakes.
She knew all this, knew what she was and how she was supposed to live her life. But she did not remember how to live that life.
Chapter one – New beginnings
Three days the girl had spent at the farm. She was not sent to work on the fields, unlike in her previous experience, something she was very grateful for. But the work in the kitchen had proven, not as hard, but certainly as difficult. The first time she had tried peeling potatoes she had done such a bad job she knew she would be sitting sorely that evening. Except she hadn’t. There had been no punishment or angry words, instead she had been told to help with the dishes. Cleaning and laundry was what she did most now, even though those were probably not the tasks most in need of help. She had almost forgotten her first encounter with the farmer, for how welcome she felt in his home now.
“No, I am glad to help.” She said when one of the farmer’s sons had asked her to help in the stables, but his mother had told him he could do it alone. Mucking out the stables was a dirty job, but she felt she somehow had to earn their generosity. Also, like cleaning it was one of those chores that were difficult to do wrong. It had been one of her daily chores at the previous farm, after they had realised she was useless on the fields. It was also at the bottom of their list of valuable contribution. Which meant at the end of the day she only got a slice of bread, while the stronger male gaeth who had worked on the fields had gotten decent meals. That didn’t matter now of course, here she was actually welcome at the dinner table, almost as if she was part of the family. Little over a week ago, when she had complained about her unfair treatment and meagre meals, the farmer had put her across his lap, the ease with which he had done so still scared her and the spanking he had given her still made her wince. She didn’t remember ever being spanked before, as a gaeth it was unlikely her first spanking, but due to her lack of memories, it certainly felt that way. There had been no privacy as the farmhouse was just one big room and everyone had seen her kick and cry, struggling almost naked over his lap as he had punished her. Just remembering the embarrassment almost made her miss a step as she followed the farmer’s son to the stables.
Normally you started your life as a gaeth at an early age, young enough that nudity did not embarrass you yet and that being punished like a child was fitting as you were still a child. But missing the memories of growing up this way made her live them anew as a young woman and showed her how embarrassing they really were. Still, the friendlier treatment of this family was making her reconsider how her life as a gaeth could actually be. Perhaps that first experience after her memory loss had not been the norm, or maybe she just had to remember herself first.
She girl had introduced herself as Eve, the name she had adopted for lack of remembering her own. It was a common name, the stories of the Perchen told it was the name of the first daughter of the gods. The farmer’s name was Jake, he had two sons, the younger was still out in the fields. She felt less clumsy with the big pitchfork than with the small kitchen tools. The stable looked remarkably the same as on the other farm. The older boy, Jack, named after his father, was a young man really and worked hard, wanting the dirty chore done with quickly, still she caught him looking at her often. She blushed every time he did. It was not the first time she had noticed and it had made her feel hot and cold at the same time. It was a strange combination, on the one hand she liked the way he watched her, liked how it made her feel about herself. But on the other hand it reminded her of how short her dress really was, how exposed her legs were and how vulnerable she could be should he desire less proper chores for an attractive female gaeth. Still, his mother would definitely not approve of that she knew.
It had been the subject of her first conversation with the farmer’s wife. It should have been an embarrassing subject, but somehow it wasn’t. “Really, I thought you’d see as much girls as men wearing the black.” It had been after the potato incident. The woman had actually apologised to her, claiming she didn’t know much about the work a female gaeth could do.
“Oh no, not at all, not out here, out on the farms. The girls go to the cities, don’t they. They don’t want to do any heavy labour. Now I’ve never been to the city myself and I don’t like gossip and rumours, but it is said most of those girls serve the people on their backs.” The farmer’s wife had seemed to enjoy having someone to talk to while working and despite her self-acclaimed distaste of gossip she had repeated every story she had heard of the services gaeth girls offered in the city. “Of course you’re not like that, you’re out here among the farms, you know I recognize a good girl when I see one.” She had assured Eve when she started looking embarrassed. Of course she couldn’t remember her past, couldn’t remember if she had done any of the things the woman told her about or even if she had come from the city. If she couldn’t remember doing those things, did that make them irrelevant to who she was now, or not?
She looked at Jack again, he was working too hard to see the blush on her face and Eve tried her best to steer her mind in another direction.
“I hope you’re not angry with my dad any more.” Jack suddenly said. It was the first time he spoke since they had started their work.
Eve looked up in surprise. “Why would I be mad at him?” She asked.
Jack replied without looking at her. “You know, for what he did, when you first came here.” Eve was too surprised to respond to that. She might have been upset at the time, but that shouldn’t really matter if you were a gaeth. “It’s just, he wasn’t himself at the time.” Jack continued as if his father had done something horrible, maybe in the eyes of this family he had, they were so different from the previous.
“Oh no, it was fine.” Eve answered, her face must be beet red she thought. Still she didn’t want to seem complaining.
“It’s just, only a day before you arrived a group of men came by. They forced their way into our house, not telling us what they were looking for as they turned the place upside down. They came and left on their horses, trampling everything in that field. Dad had been upset ever since and then you came along. Still, on your bare feet you couldn’t have done any damage compared to those horses.”
Jack had gotten all worked up telling her the story and Eve wanted to calm him down. “Well if they didn’t find what they were looking for they probably won’t come back.” She also tried to steer the conversation away from the embarrassing subject, the reminder that Jack had seen her out there on the field. But Jack seemed satisfied and together they finished their work in the stable.
A dark brown blanket closed off the small corner of the room she’d been sleeping in these last couple of days. There was only room for the straw-filled mattress and herself, but still it felt as the most generous thing anyone had ever done for her. In the previous farm she had slept in the hay in the attic. She had had more room back then, but the other male gaeth slept there as well, offering her no privacy. This straw mattress belonged to Jack who was now sharing with his brother. Apparently this was the arrangement they made when their aunt came over, but there was a huge difference between offering up a bed to family or to a gaeth.
Eve was sitting on the mattress, listening to the sounds of the family going to bed. She was waiting for the opportunity to take off her dress, she didn’t like sleeping in it because it would smell in the morning, but she didn’t want to undress while everyone was awake; the blanket used as a curtain only offered so much privacy. This had been proven to her on the first day, when Jack had pulled it aside. He had smiled at her and offered her a small clay pot. “This should help to ease some of the pain he had said. You know, because of what dad did, in the fields.”
Eve still had the small pot. Just remembering brought a blush to her face. It didn’t matter that he had seen she told herself, it was normal for a gaeth to get spanked. But a short “Thank you.” Was all she had managed at the time.
But that wasn’t what still made her blush three days later. It was what he had said after: “Do you want me to rub some of it on?” She wouldn’t have let him of course. She wouldn’t have to obey him in such a thing. It wasn’t gaeth work. But it was his mother who had saved her the need for answering his question. “Leave Eve alone and go to bed Jack.” She had said. Her son had obeyed with a sad smile and Eve had been left with the small clay pot.
Their conversation and Jack’s spying looks in the shed had made her remember now. Listening to make sure the family was asleep, she took off her dress and quickly hid under the small blanket she had been given. The ointment in the pot had smelled of herbs and when she had rubbed it on her bottom it had felt cool and soothing. The pain had disappeared as promised. Today, her cheeks felt soft and painless. No need to waste some of the precious ointment, but she could not stop herself. It had felt so nice and soothing, she just wanted to relive that night. Suddenly, with her fingers sticky with cream, she was thinking of Jack and how his hands would have felt. She blushed when she realised how aroused she was and embarrassed she tried to think of something else. She tried to put the cream back in the pot, but some remained on her fingers. Quickly she rubbed it off on her hips and reminded herself why she had needed in the first place, bringing back memories of the farmer smacking her bottom with her strap. But it didn’t help, she had already spread the oily cream from her hips to her buttocks and then between her legs, over the inside of her thighs. She couldn’t stop herself thinking of Jake telling her to lift her skirt for a spanking while she did, so she tried to think of Jack wanting to rub her bottom for her which was slightly less embarrassing. But the thought of spanking even brought memories of the embarrassing and painful spanking over the mean farmer’s knee a week ago, yet still she could not stop herself until her fingers brought her to orgasm whilst she bit the straw-filled pillow to stop herself moaning and alerting the family. She felt embarrassed afterwards, but it didn’t take long before she fell to a warm and soothing sleep.
Light coming through the single small window in the house woke her. It was empty save for the farmer’s wife who was washing clothes in a small basin in the middle of the room. The curtain that had hid her in her little corner was gone. She reached for her dress next to her mattress but didn’t find it. “I hope you don’t mind.” The farmer’s wife suddenly said. “I see you wearing it every day. It was so dirty and I was washing anyway.” Eve now saw her dress hanging on a clothes line amongst the other freshly washed clothing. Having nothing to wear she pulled the small blanket from her bed closely around her. “Oh don’t worry.” Miranda said. “The men left hours ago to take care of the animals. I only took away the curtain after they left too.”
Eve suddenly realised she had been sleeping while everyone was already off to work. As a gaeth she should’ve been up early to earn her keep. The previous farmer would’ve never let her sleep this long. “I’m sorry for sleeping so long.” She said. “I will go and help with the work right away.”
Miranda laughed. “You’re going out like that?” She asked, pointing at the small blanket covering her naked body. “You’d only be a distraction dear. Just help yourself to some breakfast, by the time your dress is dry, you can accompany my boy Jack to the village, we need some goods from the market.”
Eve made her way to the small table with the blanket still wrapped around her. There was leftover bread, cheese and fresh eggs. Her rumbling stomach told her she was hungry so she obediently ate as much as she could before clearing the table. “Is there anything else I can do?” She asked when Miranda took over the leftovers to give to the chickens.
“Go and empty the wash water, just pour it in the ditch outside. If you want you can use it to wash yourself first.”
Eve looked at the dirty grey water as the farmer’s wife left the house. It looked dirty, but not as bad as the mud on her feet. She had been able to wash every day since she came to this farm. But the nights were full of rain and there was mud everywhere. She seated herself on the stool and emerged her feet in the cold water. The mud came off easily from her feet and legs, she removed the blanket so she could wash up to her thighs, removing all the mud spatters she could find. It felt strange, sitting there, naked in a stranger’s home. She looked around, at the empty fire place, the herbs hanging from the ceiling and the old wooden furniture. She didn’t have anything to dry herself, but the floor in the room was already wet from Miranda’s washing. She just let the water drip down from her legs. Again she wrapped the blanket around her and secured it with a clothes-pin between her breasts. A quick look at herself assured Eve that it decently covered her – at least as much as her dress would – from just below her shoulders to just past her hips. She took up the heavy basin of water and carried it outside.
Her dress was still quite moist when she pulled it on, sticking to her body, it didn’t cover her more than the blanket had and revealed her features more, but still she felt more dressed and more decent than before. She had been helping Miranda with some sewing – at which she was surprisingly good – while they had waited for Jack to come back. She had pulled on the dress when they heard him on the courtyard and now they were heading towards the village. Jack was pulling the cart right now, on the way back when it would be full, she would have to help him with it. The muddy road felt slick beneath her feet and she was constantly looking out for sticks and stones that might bite the soft skin of her feet. She had realized before that she has travelled much in her past.
“Sorry about yesterday.” Jack said when the silence between them had grown uncomfortable. Eve didn’t know what to respond, so she just nodded. “I didn’t want to remind you of what had happened.” Jack continued, unsure what her nod meant. “It’s just … I’ve never seen a girl as beautiful as you before.”
The words came out without a stumble and Eve thought he might have practised them. Still they surprised her and made her feel warm inside. “Thank you.” She said, unsure what else she could say. She didn’t really know what she looked like, she didn’t remember. She was slim, like any gaeth that had to work hard for her food, her hair was brown and long, but that was about all she could tell. “It’s nothing … I’m not angry at anyone, I feel very welcome at your home.” She assured him. “And the cream really helped too.” She tried light-heartedly, just to be betrayed by a giggle and a blush. Jack smiled and Eve was glad he didn’t want to continue their conversation in that direction. Around them there were only fields and a few thickets of trees, birds filled the silence for the rest of their walk to the village.
The village itself was small, just about a dozen homes surrounding a large market square. There were more people present than could live there, most of them farmers, come to the market. Jack seemed to know everyone and greeted them all as he led her efficiently from stall to stall, gathering the goods they needed while Eve followed him silently, they had left the cart at the village entrance. He was bartering over the price of some reels of cheese as an older farmer suddenly gave his attention to Eve. “Hey girl!” He yelled. Eve turned around and noticed the old man pointing at her. He was accompanied by two young girls carrying heavy baskets filled with products from the market. “Yes you, come here, I have some work for you.”
Eve wasn’t sure what to do, she was supposed to help Jack, but he hadn’t needed her so far. Jack had heard as well however and responded for her. “She already has work Mike!” He told him. “Mother sent her to help me today.”
The old farmer didn’t seem impressed. “Well, when you’re done with her sent her along to my farm. Your mother has two sons, she doesn’t need the extra help.”
“So where does that farmer from the market live?” Eve asked as they were on the road back to the farm. She was pulling on one arm of the cart and Jack on the other. She had been thinking of leaving soon. The family was nice, but staying there wouldn’t help her remember who she was. Plus her feelings for Jack were getting a bit too uncomfortable.
“Mike? Oh you don’t have to go work for him.” Jack answered. “He’s not a very nice man.”
Eve was surprised, but immediately inclined to believe him, Jack’s family had been very good to her and they would know who was friendly and who not in this area. She didn’t want to repeat her experience from a week ago. Still she was curious and asked him why not.
“Well, you saw him in the village with his two daughters; they had to carry those heavy baskets while he didn’t carry anything himself. He always wanted sons, but his wife only gave him girls. Everyone knows he spanks them for any reason he can think of, even though they’re almost grown women now. Imagine what he’d do to a female gaeth who he could punish as much as he wants.” Eve didn’t know what to reply to this, but was thankful that Jake seemingly wanted to protect her. He misunderstood her silence however. “Unless you like that of course…” He said after a while.
Eve looked at him surprised. “Why would you think I like that?” She asked.
Jack blushed as he looked at her. “Oh uhm, no reason. I just thought I heard you … last night … never mind, no reason. It was a silly think to ask, no-one likes that.”
Eve turned away to hide the blush on her face. She knew what he had heard. She didn’t like being spanked, that’s not what it had been about. “I won’t be going to that farmer then.” She said. “A gaeth is free to go to where-ever she wants.” Was she telling Jack, she wondered, or reassuring herself?
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