Author's Note: Written for the Spankvent Challenge on Livejournal for the following prompt by ficwriterjet:
“Since Jessica can't fire Mike or Harvey after the events of the episode, she decides some 'unofficial and off the record' measures are in order. Maybe in front of each other - or maybe Mike first and then send him home before taking Harvey to task.”
The first part and dialogue are taken directly from the show!
The conclusion to the Big Lie storyline in Season 2 Episode 1. Jessica has
more personal repercussions in store for Harvey.
Disclaimer : I don’t own any of these characters, and I’m not making any money from this story.
Warnings : spanking of an adult. I do not advocate this behaviour in real life, only in fiction.
THE BIG LIE
Jessica sauntered into his office in that determined, yet still elegant stride that she had perfected. It was both alluring and intimidating – a perfect mix and she was well aware of that.
“What the hell did you say to Daniel?” she asked, not beating around the bush. He had known that his venture would entail consequences – especially because it had backfired oh so spectacularly. He had not seen that coming. He hated losing – especially against a scoundrel like Daniel Hardman. And he certainly couldn’t stomach losing twice in one day – which made the impending confrontation that much more important.
“Does it matter?” he replied without looking up from his work. A top-shelf closer knew how to roll with the punches – and he was the best.
Although he could literally feel the daggers shooting out of Jessica’s eyes penetrating his skull, he maintained a perfectly calm exterior. It helped, that it was much easier to endure Jessica’s disapproving gaze if one wasn’t looking directly at her. Of course, she seldom allowed it – especially if he was in some kind of trouble – but it didn’t mean that he wouldn’t try every single time.
“What matters is I don't ever want to see Mike Ross in this office again,” she said, changing the subject quickly and effortlessly. But today he wasn’t fazed by her intimidating demeanor – at least not as much as usually. He had the perfect strategy and he was going to use it to its extent. There was no way Jessica could deny him.
“Well, that's not gonna happen,” he replied.
“Excuse me?” He couldn’t help it; that tone of voice made him look at her. It was almost a Pavlovian response. Still he channeled all his training into this battle. He had to win this. For his ego mostly – and maybe a little bit for Mike. (Denial was a great strategy when dealing with feelings that concerned sassy associates that he had somehow grown fond of.)
“I'm not firing him.”
“Then I'll fire him.” She turned to leave, already in the process of dismissing him from this conversation.
“No, you won't,” he said, rising from his chair and forcing his nervously swinging left arm to remain unmoving. He was only partially successful. “You said you gave me the benefit of the doubt that I didn't know about Mike, otherwise you'd fire me too.” Jessica’s eyes widened dramatically, already fearing the worst. “Well, I knew.”
She blinked once, slowly, the only sign that her temper was sorely strained and that she was reeling it back in. He knew all her tells – just as she knew all of his.
“You trying to force my hand?”
“I'm trying to stay your hand. He goes, I go.”
“Pack up your things. You're done.” Jessica turned to leave. And she would follow through with that statement – Jessica did not make idle threats.
“There's only one problem with that,” he said quickly, stepping around the desk and noting Jessica’s shoulders slumping for a short moment. It was so fleeting though, that he might have imagined it. “Daniel's coming for your job. If I leave now, he'll smell something's wrong, he'll figure out what it is. You'll look reckless for letting me hire a kid without a degree, or foolish for not knowing I did it.”
“Neither quality being an asset in a managing partner.” She caught on quickly. He had expected nothing less.
“Which makes you vulnerable.”
“All because you hired the goddamn kid in the first place,” she said, head tilted to the side which Harvey recognized as one step short of nuclear. But he couldn’t back off now. Victory was within reach.
“Be that as it may, he'll use it against you. You need me. And I'm not staying without Mike.”
Jessica had known that she could not win the moment her shoulders slumped – a first sign of defeat – but now he could clearly see it in her face. He didn’t like hurting her – or putting her in such a bind. She’d done so much for him and he owed her a lot. He would be eternally in her debt, but he couldn’t let Mike go. He’d never admit it, but he actually liked the kid.
They stood staring at each other for a long moment. Harvey almost didn’t dare to blink in case Jessica came up with a solution that he hadn’t thought of and caught him off guard. And boy, was looking at her hard! She was so clearly displeased about being played that Harvey fought the urge to fidget in place. He was a grown man and grown men did not fidget like schoolboys.
(Although he might have glimpsed a bit of pride in her expression too – Harvey had been her pet project after all.)
“Fine,” she finally said and he breathed a barely hidden sigh of relief. A small smile spread across her face. That smile that showed fury and pride in equal parts. While it pleased him that she deemed him worthy of her tutelage, it also set warning bells off in his head. “Well played.” Appreciation was evident in her voice. “And well thought through.”
“I learned from the best,” he replied, fighting the tingling feeling of dread creeping up the back of his spine. She acknowledged his compliment with a tip of her head. It was only a partial victory, he knew, there would be repercussions for his missteps. Jessica had very few rules. But those she had, you’d better not mess with.
He was still deciding whether the best course of action was to come forth with an apology or wait and see what route Jessica would chose, when thankfully the decision was taken out of his hands.
“Well played indeed,” she repeated. “It does not negate the fact that you lied to me and that I’m very displeased with that.” Dread pooled low in his stomach. How could he not have thought of this beforehand? (Well maybe he did, but somehow convinced himself that Jessica surely wouldn’t do that.)
“I had to.”
“You chose to,” she contradicted. “I have one rule. – One rule for this partnership to work.” He fidgeted nervously. “You don’t lie to me.”
“No,” she interrupted, raising one finger to shush him. “You’re right about Daniel. – You might even be right about Mike.” He couldn’t help but look pleased at that. “But we wouldn’t be in this mess if you hadn’t lied to me.”
He turned his head to the side, irritated, and clenched his teeth.
“I had to!” he finally settled to say again – but louder. “You wouldn’t have let me keep him if you had known!” Jessica raised her eyebrows at his outburst, managing to make him uncomfortable with just that one look.
“He’s not a puppy, Harvey,” she said. “And you’re right. I wouldn’t have. – Because it’s wrong.”
“But he’s good!” he said, one hand jerking angrily in her direction. “Do you actually think I’d let myself be played by someone who wasn’t smart? Maybe almost as smart as me?”
“High praise for a kid you took off the streets,” she replied, still infuriatingly calm. “Not the point though. You lied to me knowingly for a long time.” Harvey huffed, unable to contradict her, and shoved his hands deep in his pockets to keep them from gesturing wildly. “You know what happens when you lie to me. I saw a ruler on Donna’s desk.” His gaze snapped back to her, surprised. “Get it, please.”
“Jessica,” he started not quite knowing where to go. “Not here.” He absolutely loathed getting it at the office – or anywhere other than in the privacy of Jessica’s apartment.
“We’re at the office,” he said, desperation clear in his voice, and just in case she had forgotten where they were actually at. There was still a slight chance that he might change her mind. Maybe not about the punishment, but certainly about the location.
“I’m aware,” she replied. “It’s not something we haven’t done before though, is it?” Shame and nervousness fought for dominance in the pit of his stomach and it was making him nauseous.
She couldn’t be serious about doing it here – in his office!
“But these walls are glass!” He gestured wildly towards them, waving his hand agitatedly when she seemed unimpressed by his outburst.
“Anyone could walk by and see!” She was being dense on purpose, he decided. There was no way she couldn’t see his point.
“First of all, it’s the middle of the night. The floor is empty.” He opened his mouth to argue. “And second of all, I don’t plan to spank you here. – Unless you insist.”
“Of course not!” he replied. “And could you please not call it a spanking?”
“I’ll call it what it is,” she said cold-heartedly. “Now get that ruler and meet me in my private office.”
“I have things to do still and this clearly cannot wait. Get the ruler, please.”
“Do you really want me to get it?”
“Then move.” She turned and left swiftly, leaving him to gape after her. The “private office” was a small room behind Jessica’s actual office that she sometimes used for delicate conversations. Unfortunately he’d been summoned there for only one reason – and it had never been pleasant. With Jessica out of sight he hung his head and cursed his luck. He should have known better though. Not once throughout the years had he got away with lying to Jessica. Not a single time.
It sure said something about his ability to learn from his mistakes. Unfortunately lying was his default setting. A splendid trait for a lawyer – not so great for a strict boss and mentor.
Taking another deep breath, he went and rummaged through Donna’s desk for that dreaded implement. Jessica had a predilection for rulers. It probably had something to do with the fact that they worked at an office and a ruler was never far away. She was all for efficiency. Much to his chagrin.
He felt incredibly stupid walking the short distance down the hallway clutching a wooden ruler in his right hand. He loathed having to bring the implement for an announced punishment. It made him feel like a child. – Not that anything about the whole ordeal made him feel especially grown up.
He didn’t stop to gather his courage in front of Jessica’s office. For once, he did not want to get caught in the hallway with a ruler in his hand. And secondly, the “don’t keep me waiting” might have been unspoken but nevertheless just as rigid.
Jessica was already waiting for him. With her arms crossed tightly across her chest she was gazing out the window. Thankfully they were too far up for anyone to see, and Harvey quickly closed and locked the door behind him. The chances of anyone barging in here were slim – especially in the middle of the night, but he didn’t want to take any chances.
Jessica turned and held her hand out and he dutifully placed the ruler in it. Somewhat glad to be rid of it while at the same time apprehensive about its impending use.
“Do we need to talk about the reason why you’re here?” she asked. “Again, I might add.”
“No,” he replied. Jessica didn’t like it when he played dumb. That had been a mistake he hadn’t made a second time. “I lied to you about Mike.”
“You did.” She stepped around the table towards him and he valiantly suppressed the urge to flee. “If I recall correctly, we had a conversation about you lying to me not so long ago. Did we not?”
“We did,” he admitted, dropping his gaze to the floor. There was no sugar-coating that fact.
“And yet we’re here again.” Jessica tapped the table with the ruler. “Drop you pants and get into position.” There was no use arguing with her, Harvey knew. There never was when they got to this point. It didn’t mean that he wouldn’t try occasionally. But today he knew that it would be an especially moot point, so he sighed and shrugged out of his suit jacket, before unfastening his slacks quickly. It was best to get it over with, and maybe Jessica would be appeased by his quick compliance and go easy on him. He let his pants drop to the floor and bent over swiftly, feeling young and foolish. Probably Jessica’s point.
For what felt like an eternity he was horribly aware of his pants pooling around his ankles and the cold air on the back of his legs. Then Jessica pushed his shirttails out of the way, holding them at the small of his back, and let the ruler descend.
He groaned loudly unable to hide his reaction to this unpleasantness. He had long ago given up on being entirely quiet. It was simply impossible. Even if Jessica wasn’t so proficient with that damn ruler. It hurt . The pain came sharply and without pause. And it wasn’t something that one could get used to with experience. And boy, did he have a lot of experience!
She peppered his backside with sharp smacks. Every slap perfectly aligned with the one before until they all seemed to blend together.
“Is there anything you’d like to say?” she asked, not pausing in her onslaught. He shifted his weight from foot to foot, fingers scrambling across the table’s smooth surface for something to hold onto.
“I’m sorry for lying!” he said quickly. “But you wouldn’t have let me hire Mike otherwise!” It was a foolish thing to say. Jessica’s response was a flurry of smacks that made him yelp very unmanly.
“Of course I wouldn’t!” she said, pressing her hand more firmly against his back to still his squirming. “Because he didn’t study law!”
“Ow! Jessica!” he complained, fist pressed against his temple.
“I wouldn’t have let you hire Mike as an associate,” she said. “But there might have been other possibilities, Harvey.” The relentless smacking made listening rather difficult – not to mention his yelps that continued to increase in volume. “I found a way to hire you and gave you the possibility to go to Harvard, didn’t I?”
“Yes! You did!” he agreed quickly.
“And what made you doubt that I’d find a solution for this?” She moved her focus down to include the back of his thighs and a sob rose in his chest that he couldn’t fight back down.
“I don’t know!” he wailed, fist hitting the table. “It seemed –ow! Like a good idea at the time!”
“Well, it wasn’t.” She kept the ruler aimed at the back of his thighs and his leg twitched forward, rattling the table.
“Hold still,” Jessica ordered.
“I’m trying! – It hurts!” he complained, furiously wiping his eyes to disperse the tears that had spilled over. “OW!”
“Maybe it’ll finally hurt enough for you to remember,” she said without sympathy.
“I will!” There was no point in trying to be stoic any longer. The dam had broken and his butt hurt so badly that he couldn’t even keep the crying quiet any longer. “I’m sorry,” he sobbed, hiding his face in his arms. “Really sorry,” he added as Jessica made no sign of stopping.
After that he just focused on crying. The ordeal continued for a bit longer, accompanied by his crying and the occasional yelp or sob, until Jessica was convinced of his repentance. Then her hand moved soothingly up and down his back while he tried to get his unmanly outburst under control.
It took longer than he would have liked, but after some time he pushed himself up and bent quickly to fix his clothing, taking his time to tuck his shirt in and button his pants again. Then there was that awkward pause, where he tried to look at anything but her while his hands clenched by his sides to keep them from rubbing at his stinging backside.
Thankfully Jessica was never one to draw out the ordeal. She stepped closer and squeezed his shoulder once before patting his cheek, a thumb brushing over his cheekbone soothingly just once. She didn’t force him to look at her, which he really appreciated. He needed a bit more time to collect himself. But somehow Jessica always knew when to give him space and when to hug and comfort.
“I want you to call Mike,” she ordered, drawing her hand back again. “Tell him to come here.” He nodded, not yet trusting his voice. He had expected as much. “Then you’re going home to get some rest.”
“What about Mike?” he asked tentatively, voice hoarse.
“Don’t worry. I’m not going to eat him,” she replied. “I just want to get to know him. See what makes you like that kid so much and if he’s really worth the effort.”
“He is,” Harvey said with conviction. He glanced up at her to gauge her reaction. Jessica nodded shortly.
“And tell him how much I don’t like being lied to,” she added, and Harvey winced averting his eyes again. “Call him, please,” she repeated. He nodded his affirmative, rubbed at his face one last time, then left the small room to do as Jessica had asked – and hide in the bathroom until his face had gone back to normal.