Author's Note: This is a tag to the episode of Days of Our Lives that aired on July 4th 2012. Who else out there thinks that Will is in over his head, and that this new blackmail attempt will come back to bite him in the ass? Here's my take on how EJ could have dealt with Will if he were just a little more evil than he is in the show. This is a stand alone story, NOT a follow up to my previous story 'Unmasked Submission'.
Disclaimer: I don't own any of these characters, and I'm not making any money from this story.
Warning: Spanking of an adult by a manipulative mentor. Dubious consent.

_ _ _

"Just so we're clear. I own you now." Will said, before turning and walking out the door of the mansion.

EJ watched him leave, frankly too irritated with himself to focus on the boy. How could he have been so careless? He should have either locked that letter up, burned it, or kept it on him at all times. But he hadn't, and now he had to deal with Will's new little blackmail attempt.

He spent half an hour on self-recrimination, before his thoughts turned towards problem solving. He hadn't gotten to where he was in life by wallowing in self-pity every time something went wrong. After going over the conversation he'd had with Will several times, he decided on a plan of action, weighed the pros and cons of it, and decided it was time to act.

He left the mansion with a predatory smile on his face, and headed to Will's recently reacquired apartment. Once there, he knocked impatiently at the door.

"One second!" Will yelled. A few moments later, he opened the door while speaking, "You're… not Sonny." The younger man had obviously been in the process of changing his clothes. His bare feet stuck out from under a pair of black jeans, he was wearing a light gray tee shirt, and he was holding a button down dark red shirt in his hand.

"Astute observation, William," the older man said.

"What do you want?" Will asked with a glare.

"You and I need to have a little chat." EJ pushed his way into the apartment without being invited, and went to sit on the armrest of the couch.

"I don't have time for this right now. Sonny is…"

EJ cut him off. "I suggest that you make the time, William."

Will looked at the time and sighed. Sonny wasn't supposed to be there for half an hour. He closed the door and locked it, not wanting Sonny to accidentally overhear anything he and EJ might be discussing. He shoved his arms into the red shirt, and turned to face the older man. He crossed his arms, and said, "So talk."

EJ put his hands on his knees, and leaned forward. "I've thought it over, and I've decided to let you become my right hand man."

Will scoffed and shook his head with a grin on his face. "How generous of you, seeing as how you didn't have a choice."

EJ smiled as well, but it wasn't friendly. "Earlier at the mansion you said this was a Checkmate, did you not?"

Will shrugged, "Just calling it what it is."

EJ shook his head and chuckled, "Ah, but that's where you're wrong William, this isn't a checkmate, this is a stalemate. Do you know what that is?"

Hesitantly Will said, "That's when no one wins, and no one loses. Like a stand off."

"Correct. What you've done is level the playing field." EJ held his hands out with his palms down and made a wide motion to indicate flat ground. "Where as before I was holding all the valuable information, now we both have to hold each other's secrets, or we both lose."

Will shrugged again, pretending that this new way of thinking about it didn't make him nervous. He smiled and a tiny laugh escaped. "I don't see it that way. You have more to lose."

EJ glared at the boy, and stood up. "Let's look at the worst case scenario shall we?" He moved slowly towards the smaller man. "We both tell the police our secrets, and we both go to prison. I do have enough money and resources to make sure that we become cell mates."

Will's eyes opened wide with shock. EJ stepped into his personal space, and Will took a step back, bumping into the door behind him. EJ stepped towards him again, and blocked Will in by putting his hands on the door on either side of Will's head.

"How do you think you'll fair in prison, William? A pretty boy like you with your mother's blond hair, blue eyes, and small frame? How do you think I'll treat you once I've nothing left to lose?" He leaned in so they were almost nose to nose. "I'd be careful not to leave any bruising on your face of course. How much do you think the other inmates might pay me if I let them borrow you for an hour?"

Will tried to plaster himself further against the door. His eyes were wide with terror, and he could hear his own racing heartbeat in his ears when he shook his head violently no.

"You'd rather not picture that?" EJ said with a smile. "I'd rather not picture it either, but it's important to understand all the possible outcomes before you decide to take action." The older man pushed himself back away from the frightened boy, and went to sit on the arm of the couch again. "Now that we've gotten that unpleasantness out of the way, shall we discuss what our working relationship is going to look like from this point on?"

The younger man was too busy trying not to hyperventilate to respond, so EJ continued with a pleasant smile. "I hate to admit it, but I did feel a glimmer of pride during your most recent blackmail attempt. It shows me that you have learned some of the things I've tried to teach you, but it also shows me that you still have much to learn."

Will hadn't moved or responded since EJ left him against the door, but his eyes had followed the older man's every move. EJ raised his voice. "William! Are you listening to me?"

Will's body jumped slightly at the tone, and he nodded. EJ could see the fear still written all over Will's face, and sighed. "I don't intend for either of us to go to prison, William. I said that was the worst case scenario. The best case scenario is that we keep each other's secrets, and then we both benefit from this new working relationship. I'm going to teach you everything about the business, and the more you learn, the more power you'll have."

Feeling slightly less panicked, Will nodded, and said quietly, "That's what I want."

EJ smiled. "I know it is, and I truly am flattered that you want to become like me. Now that I've had some time to think it over, I even believe that at your core, you may be more like me than I gave you credit for."

Will stood up a little straighter and said, "Thank you."

"But you're very young, William. You're only nineteen. When you walked across the room to point your finger at me and tell me that you owned me, it was like watching a little puppy growling at it's master. Adorable yes, but also quite foolish."

Will's cheeks turned pink with a mix of embarrassment and anger.

"So if you want this new business relationship of ours to work, you're going to have to become more professional. There are three areas in particular that you need to work on." EJ put a finger up for each of the three items. "Respect, discretion, and loyalty."

Frowning, Will said, "You don't deserve those things from me."

"You've missed the point entirely, William. You're still looking at the world through the eyes of a child, and letting your emotions determine your behavior."

Will crossed his arms, not liking that assessment.

"Let's take respect for example. You need to speak to me with respect, even when you're angry, and even if we don't agree. This isn't necessarily because I deserve respect, though I do, it's because being respectful to your business partner is the professional way to conduct yourself."

EJ looked carefully at the boy, trying to see if he was getting through to him or not. "Then there's discretion. We've had more than one issue between us due to your lack of judgment. Things just seem to slip out of your mouth at the most inopportune times. 'Oops I told my mother I saw you two having sex.' 'Oops I let it slip that you're blackmailing me on three separate occasions so now both of my parents and Sonny know.' 'Oops I purposely let Rafe know you slept with my mother while telling Sonny about it.' It's getting redundant, William, and that's a problem."

Will shook his head, and pointed to the ground with his hand. "Those are all personal. None of that has anything to do with DiMera Enterprises or your campaign for Mayor. I never told anyone about the things you had me do for you."

"True," The older man conceded, "but when you can't keep your mouth shut about personal things, it doesn't instill confidence that you'll be able to keep company secrets, now does it? Not to mention that bringing your personal issues into the workplace is unprofessional."

"And now we come to loyalty." EJ glared at the boy.

Will glared right back. "I'll be loyal to you, when you're loyal to me."

"When I'm loyal to you?" EJ said with disbelief. He looked away and muttered to himself, "When I'm loyal to you." He turned a furious expression towards the boy, and said, "When was I not loyal to you? When I gave you a car and an apartment? When I gave you a job with real life experience in the business world? When I helped your mother get past her shock after you came out? When I bailed you out of jail even after you'd betrayed me? When I told you how to clear your name of murder charges? When William? When was I not loyal?"

"You used me!" Will yelled. "That's not loyalty!"

The older man took a deep breath, and pointed to a spot on the floor beside his right foot. "Come here, William."

"Why?" Will asked, carefully not moving from his spot.

EJ stood and advanced on the boy. "Because I need you to understand that we are not equals, and there are consequences for speaking to me with that kind of disrespect." He got into Will's personal space again and said, "You are going to be my right hand man, which correctly implies that you are directly under me in the chain of command. I will not tolerate you speaking to me the way you speak to your mother. I will not tolerate you sharing our company secrets with your little friend Sonny or anyone else for that matter. I will not tolerate the kind of disloyalty you showed me when you did my father's bidding behind my back. And I will not tolerate the kind of disobedience that happened today when you didn't do the job I sent you to do."

Other than some shallow rapid breathing, the young man remained pressed against the door motionless.

"Obviously I can no longer fire you, but that doesn't mean you won't be punished when you do something wrong.

Will shook his head weakly.

"Because of your youth, and because I'm more of a mentor and teacher than a boss to you, I've decided to use the same method of correction that was used in my boarding schools. I don't own a cane, but I'm positive that my hand will be effective enough for most infractions, and the humiliation of being over my knee for a smacked bottom will certainly help the lesson stick."

Will's entire face turned an even brighter shade of pink. "No," he whispered, feeling close to tears.

EJ turned and walked back to the couch. He slipped his suit jacket off, lay it over the back of the couch, and loosened his tie. "Yes, William. We're going to start things off right by taking care of the disrespect you showed me all day today, the disloyalty you showed me by taking that letter, and the disobedience you showed me by not picking up the package." He sat back down on the armrest of the couch, put his hands on his knees and said, "So come here."

"I'd rather go to prison," Will said in a strained voice.

"If we end up in prison, you'll long for the days when all I did was turn you over my knee." EJ narrowed his eyes and decided a lie was in order. "You do understand that if I wasn't fond of you William, I'd simply have you killed. A gay bashing gone wrong could have easily been arranged after that front page report." He saw the blood drain from the boy's face, and gentled his voice. "But I don't want you dead or gone. I like you. That's why I chose this method of punishment. It will sting your pride more than anything else, which will hopefully teach you to keep your behavior in check in the future. Come, let's get it over with, because I will not be sharing any of the company's information with you before we have the chain of command firmly established."

"EJ… I'm sorry, okay? I was out of line today, and I'm sorry. It won't happen again."

"I'm sure it won't, especially after you've had your first taste or corporal punishment, but rest assured that if it does, I'm more than willing to do this again."

The two men stared at each other for a few seconds. EJ crossed his arms and said, "I'm not going to come and get you William. If you need a day or two to think it over, that's fine with me, but you don't get to come back to work until this happens. Trust me when I tell you that waiting for it will only make you more anxious. It's best to get it over with as quickly as possible."

Will closed his eyes for a moment. He hated himself for being so power hungry, that he was actually considering letting EJ do such a humiliating thing to him. But after having a taste of what life could be like as EJ's intern, he knew that no minimum wage job would ever be satisfying, and at nineteen there weren't many other jobs he could get. He also knew EJ was right about how he would fair in prison.

He took a deep breath, opened his eyes, and kept them focused on the ground as he slowly walked towards his former stepfather. Will stopped just out of reach and said, "Okay, but after this you're gonna let me in on everything, right? You're going to teach me how to run DiMera Enterprises."

"Yes, God help us, that's the plan."

Will took the final step over to where EJ sat, cringing at his own decision as he made it.

The older man grabbed Will's left wrist in his hand and said, "That's the first good decision you've made all day, William." Not wanting to give the boy a chance to panic, he gave the wrist a firm yank.

Will fell face down across EJ's lap, and flailed for a moment, unsure what to do with his limbs. The urge to try and stand up was next to impossible to ignore. EJ quickly wrapped his left arm around Will's waist to keep him down, and immediately started slapping the seat of Will's jeans with the flat of his hand.

Surprised by the swift barrage of smacks, Will squirmed uncomfortably, and muttered, "Shit."

For the next full minute, EJ rained down slaps. Soon the younger man's entire backside and upper thighs were throbbing and sore. His squirms increased as the spanking kept going, and soon little groans of pain came out after every couple of smacks.

EJ stopped as suddenly as he'd started, and rested his spanking hand on the back of Will's left thigh.

"What have we learned, William?"

A low whine of distress came from the boy, before he said quietly, "Respect. I need to talk to you with respect."

"Very good. Anything else?"

After a long pause, Will said, "You want me to be loyal and discreet?"

"Yes that's true, but not specifically what I was looking for." EJ started spanking again.

"Ah!" Will yelped at the unexpected pain. "The letter! I shouldn't have taken the letter!"

EJ gave him six more smacks and said, "I don't blame you entirely for that. If I'd answered your original disloyalty using this method of punishment instead of firing you, I highly doubt it would have happened. So while I do understand why you took the letter and used it to get your job back," he laid down two more smacks, "your smug attitude about it was quite unnecessary."

"Ow!" Will tried not to let the older man know how much the spanking was hurting, but that was getting harder with each swat.

"If you'd been more professional about your approach, things would have gone more smoothly for both of us."

"You're right," Will said, hoping to avoid any further punishment. "I'm sorry."

"Apology accepted, William. Now let's discuss the job you failed to do today."

The young man groaned unhappily. EJ spanked and lectured at the same time, "When I send you out to complete a task, it's very important that you complete it, and if you're unable to complete it, you need to call me and tell me about it. It is unacceptable to simply not do the task because you're having an ill timed fit of temper. If you want to be my right hand man, then I have to be able to trust you to do whatever job I send you to do." He ended the lecture with two harsh smacks to the center of the boy's butt.

Unable to take it stoically, Will 'owed' his way through the older man's lecture. When the last two slaps came down harder than the rest, Will's feet came up off the floor for a second.

"Ow! Okay, okay! I got it. No more blowing off a job. I swear it won't happen again. Just please stop."

The older man rested his spanking hand on Will's thigh again, and said, "It had better not happen again."

"It won't. I promise."

"Do we have an understanding, William?"

"Yes. Absolutely."

EJ considered it for a second, and said, "I'm not sure that I'm convinced."

Will shifted uncomfortably and said, "Please EJ, I promise I'm going to do better, and not just because of this either. I'm going to do better, because I want people to take me seriously, and the things you said made a lot of sense."

"Very well." EJ took his hand off Will's back so he could stand

There was a knock at the door, causing both men to look that direction.

"Shit," Will hissed in a panic, and practically jumped up off EJ's lap. His eyes went from EJ to the door, and back again. "Shit."

EJ rolled his eyes, stood up, and put an arm around the boy's shoulders. He leaned down and whispered, "Calm down, William, it's fine. I just stopped by to discuss your new work schedule with you, right?"

It took Will a few seconds to catch on, but eventually he nodded.

There was another tentative knock on the door, and Sonny's voice said, "Will? Are you home?"

"Be right there." Will said.

EJ patted Will's back before grabbing his suit jacket off the back of the couch. He slipped it on while walking to the front door. He opened it, smiled at Sonny's surprise, and said, "Sonny."

"EJ?" Sonny said.

"I was just leaving." He turned back to Will and said, "I want you in the office first thing in the morning, William. Don't be late." EJ left with a confident smile on his face.

Once EJ was gone, silence stretched out between the two younger men. Sonny looked closely at his friend, and knew something bad had happened. Will's entire face was red, and he couldn't meet Sonny's eyes.

With a sigh, Sonny walked in, and shut the door behind him. "What happened?" he asked gently.

Will shook his head and said, "Nothing." He was horrified to find himself close to tears, and kept his eyes glued to the carpet while trying to reign in his emotions.

"That's obviously not true, Will." Sonny took a step towards him and said softly, "You can tell me."

The blond man shook his head no again, and a tear slipped down his face. He wiped it off with irritation, and backed up a step. "I just need a minute." He turned to go to the bathroom, but a hand on his shoulder stopped him in mid step.

Will had been so happy during lunch, it was a shock to see him so upset now. A feeling of dread bubbled up in Sonny. "He didn't hurt you did he?"

"No," Will whispered, and wiped another tear away. Even in this moment of slight panic, Will knew he wasn't crying over any physical pain.

"Will, look at me." Sonny moved to stand in front of his friend. Will sniffed, and brought his eyes up to meet Sonny's. Sonny squeezed the blond man's shoulder and said, "Tell me what happened."

A couple more tears slipped out, and Will said, "He said I'm unprofessional."

Sonny blinked. Of all the things he might have expected, that wasn't one of them. "Okay, and then what?"

"And I realized he's right, and I'm angry with myself. I… I kind of messed up today, and he… well he called me on it, and he's right." Will shook his head, and used both hands to wipe the tears off his face. "I hate it when he's right."

Feeling an overwhelming urge to protect his distraught friend, Sonny pulled him into a strong hug, and wondered if that urge would have been so strong a few months ago before his feelings for Will started to turn into more than friendship. He felt Will's arms go around him to hug back, and Sonny said gently, "How about we skip The Spot tonight. I could go get us some take out and a movie instead."

Will let himself relax for the first time since EJ showed up on his doorstep. "That sounds good. Really, really good."



Sonny let Will go and said, "Okay then. I'll be back in a few minutes."

"Thank you, for being here for me again," Will said sincerely. "I'm sorry I keep crying on your shoulder." Will wiped at a wet spot on Sonny's shirt.

Sonny squeezed Will's shoulder and said, "I'm not. That's what friends are for. I'll always be here for you." He patted Will's shoulder before leaving to go get them some food and rent a movie.

Once Will was alone, he put both hands back on his rear end, and tried to rub out some of the residual sting. He thought over the things EJ had said to him, and realized the older man had also been right about the spanking stinging his pride. The position had been horribly embarrassing, but it was EJ's opinion of Will that had seriously stung. He vowed to change the older man's opinion over the next few weeks, and went to change into loose fitting pants that didn't rub against his sore skin.

The End

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