Copyright 1997 to <pablo@thetreehouse.net> Please respect this copyright. Don't distribute or archive this story in any way except for personal use without explicit permission. No, it's not in the public domain. Ask first, okay? Thanks.

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[Image of Mr Impossible] Its
by Pablo

He's such a pedant. I hate him.

She's such a brat. She makes my life a misery.

If he wasn't such a pedant, I wouldn't be sitting here, hot and itchy in my uniform, looking through the window at the others, playing outside. Pout.

If she wasn't such a brat, she wouldn't need constant attention, guidance, discipline. Yes, young lady, I said full uniform. And don't pout!

Sigh. If he wasn't such a pedant, he wouldn't care about the difference between 'principal' and 'principle', between 'flout' and 'flaunt', between 'imply' and 'infer'.

If she wasn't such a brat, she would have learned the differences by now.

If he wasn't such a pedant, I wouldn't be shuffling uncomfortably on this hard chair, my poor bottom throbbing.

If she wasn't such a brat, I wouldn't need to take her across my lap quite so often. Wouldn't need to paddle her bare cheeks till they glowed. Wouldn't need to hug, to comfort, to coax back the sunshine smile.

If he wasn't such a pedant, an apostrophe wouldn't matter.

If she wasn't such a brat, she'd have accepted that an apostrophe matters very much.

If he wasn't such a pedant, it wouldn't. So there.

If I wasn't such a pedant, it still would. Though I am a pedant, so I smile patiently, and wonder how her lines are coming.

If I wasn't such a brat, the hateful lines would be finished, 500 in immaculate handwriting: 'The possessive pronoun 'its' has no apostrophe.' But I am a brat.

If she wasn't such a brat, my brow would not furrow as I watch, wondering what she's thinking.

If I wasn't such a brat, I wouldn't be selecting a broad-tipped, fluorescent pen, starting again, inserting five-hundred bright green, entirely-incorrect apostrophes. Wouldn't be giggling helplessly.

If she wasn't such a brat, I wouldn't be suppressing a smile, anticipating the delicious disparity between the innocence of her face, and the inescapable evidence of wilful disobedience.

If he wasn't such a pedant, how could I be sure I'd be spanked for this?

If she wasn't such a brat, how could I be such a pedant? How could I scold her sternly, send her shamefaced to the corner, unless I knew the India-rubber bounce of her brattiness would come back? How could I hear the first deep sob, without knowing that she'll forgive me just as I forgive her. Always. Without condition.

If he wasn't such a pedant, how could I be such a brat? How could we say so much without words? How could I let him put me across his lap, hold me tight, spank me hard, way beyond remorse and tears?

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She's in my arms, her chest shaking out the last of the naughtiness as she sobs silently. If she wasn't such a brat, I couldn't love her one tiny little bit more than I do.

I'm holding as tightly as I can. He's such a pedant, and my heart has been stolen away.

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