You hesitate for a second. That doesn’t go down well. Terra takes you by the hand, twists you around and lands two slaps on your bottom hard enough to make you skip up onto your toes.
“To my office, cadet,” she repeats. You can’t help but notice that she’s being really intensely stern. You know what awaits you in the office won’t be good for your butt, if Nina’s swats are anything to go by.
“Uh, maybe I will take that transfer to another instructor after all,” you quip. It earns you another hard slap right to the center of your cheeks.
Terra puts one hand on the back of your neck and marches you back to her office without another word. Once you’re back inside the cool sanctum, she turns to you, her hands on her hips as she looks you up and down.
“You will never speak to me the way you spoke to me when you left my office before, understand?”
Her eyes are burning into you, and the relief at knowing you’re not being transferred has lifted your mood enough that you’re now capable of feeling a little guilty about that.
“Yes ma’am,” you say quickly.
She nods curtly. “Now, cadet. We have a lot to deal with. There’s your behavior last night, which I had some part to play in, there’s missing class this morning, and there’s your disrespect. Where do you think we should start?”
“I don’t care where we start, as long as it doesn’t end in me being transferred.”
Her stern demeanor cracks for a second and you see a softening around her eyes.
“Cadet,” she says. “I have to make one thing very clear. I’m your instructor. That’s the limit of this. I take my role seriously. I take your career seriously.”
“All I said was I didn’t want to be transferred,” you point out. She’s spending an awful lot of time making disclaimers about something that you’ve never even mentioned. You feel your face heat in a blush as you realize how transparent you must have been acting for her to talk to you this way. “I’m sorry I made you uncomfortable, ma’am.”
“You don’t make me uncomfortable, cadet,” she reassures you. “It’s just…” she draws in a breath and shakes her head. “I’m going to deal with your lateness this morning first.”
She points at the desk and picks up a thin see through paddle you hadn’t noticed sitting there until just now. “Bend over, young lady.”