Community Service - Part 8(New Version)

This story is written by David, please send comments and appreciation to


Community Service Ch. 8.

Chapter 8: Things are going downhill fast - in the Sock Room.
Week 4: Monday. 08:10.

"Once you've served our coffee - whether it is our pre-work coffee or another coffee break - don't wait to be told what to do next, double-oh-seven!" snapped Community Service Officer Linda.

"On your knees! Now - Sock Boy!" ordered Community Service Officer Karen. "We shouldn't have to tell you, by now: Footrest!"

"Yes, it should be automatic, by now - second nature," said CSO Linda. "And you know what to do then, double-oh-seven. Without being told!"

I felt totally disinclined, this morning, at the start of what promised to be another misery-laden week, to respond with the expected obedient and respectful - reverential - 'Yes, Miss Karen' and 'Yes, Miss Linda'.

Saying nothing, I got to my knees upon the Sock Room's office carpet, in obedient and compliant but reluctant and resentful observance of the pre-work routine that CSOs Karen and Linda had established. 

With its mean cushioned underlay and rough, utilitarian-weave bristly scratchy synthetic fibres, wearing my community servant issue white shorts the carpet's austere pile didn't feel too great on my bare kneecaps. 

But that was the least, of my first-thing-in-the-morning discomforts.

On their castor-wheeled office chairs, cups of coffee in hands my two young Sock Room supervisors scooted out from behind their desks. They rolled up to me, raised their legs and comfortably rested their feet, ankles crossed, upon my obediently proffered shoulders.

CSO Karen, in front of me and slightly to my left, used my left shoulder, while CSO Linda, in front of me and slightly to my right, took the same advantage of my right shoulder.

Happily, for my two young supervisors, there was no pesky need for them to adjust the accustomed height of their computer chair seats. With their outstretched legs slightly elevated, on my knees the height of my 'footrest' shoulders was just right for them: CSOs Karen and Linda weren't the slightest bit inconvenienced, in putting their coffee-time feet up. 

They'd both kicked off, under their desks, their uniform clog-like, black leather, thick rubber soled backless shoes.

Shoes, that, in an additional, personal service duty, my two young Sock Room supervisors had made me responsible for keeping in spick and span order. 

Every day without fail, somehow I had to find the time to come into their office and clean and polish their AFP-issue footwear for them as they sat at their desks: pry free any small stones and suchlike stuck between the treads, and polish and buff up the black leather to a gleaming shine. 

And I knew what to expect, from CSOs Karen and Linda, if they weren't happy with the daily maintenance cleaning and polishing efforts of their conscripted shoeshine boy ...

I looked straight ahead, right between my two young Sock Room supervisors' blue-blazered shoulders. 

Though they were both looking right at me, I tried not to look back, at the forbidding, ever reproving expressions on CSOs Karen and Linda's very attractive but stern-looking faces. 

Their uniform AFP-modified, militaristic-looking concave bob hairstyle had a decidedly unsettling effect. The somehow disturbing hairdo served to harden the softness of their feminine lines, and brought to the fore and into sharp relief, their underlying, authoritative and intimidating personas. 

CSO Karen said, "Sock Boy seems a bit sluggish this morning, Lindz. He didn't answer us respectfully. And he didn't respond to our orders satisfactorily and with due promptness. But more than that: I don't like his sullen, resentful, irreverent attitude, Lindz, that he seems to think he can just stroll in here, all pouty faced, and present to us."

"Anyone would think he doesn't want to be here," replied CSO Linda. "With us." 

"I don't expect to see a smile on his face - and I don't want to: if I see a smile on his face, that tells me I'm not doing my job properly. But, whenever he is attending us, Lindz, I don't want to see a resentful pout - evidence, that he has not even reconciled, let alone embraced himself, to committing himself wholeheartedly to our personal service." 

"The sooner he reconciles himself to keeping us sweet, Karen, the better off he'll be," said CSO Linda. "Because he'll get no reward for good behaviour - only severe punishment, for bad."

"I want to see Sock Boy straining at the leash, Lindz, yearning to do our bidding - yearning to run and fetch our sticks. I want to see him chomping at the bit, eager to obey us - eager to jump through our hoops ... Maybe we should wake his ideas up." 

Crossing her uniform, yellow cotton ankle-socked feet on 'her' shoulder, CSO Linda said, "You're right, Karen. His heart isn't in it. Obviously, we've been too soft with him; cutting him way too much slack. In his position, double-oh-seven should be wanting to bend over backwards to please us. Doesn't he realise, yet, that keeping us sweet should be his Number One priority? Doesn't he realise, yet, that we can influence every facet of his standard of living? That we can exert control, over his very quality of life? Doesn't he appreciate, our actual power?" 

"I don't think so, Lindz. It doesn't seem to have sunk in yet, does it?" said CSO Karen. "Judging by his actions."

"How about we administer the Standard Six?" suggested CSO Linda. "If he's not eager to please us? If he doesn't want to keep us sweet? That should wake him up a bit. Help him to remember his priorities. And if that fails, well, there's always his brother John ..."

"You always said, Lindz, that Sock Boy has a lippy, rebellious streak that we'd always have to keep on top of, and occasionally need to stamp down on ... But, yes: There's always the trusty fallback of his brother John, isn't there, Lindz? Just one phone call is all it would take, to set the wheels in motion. Just one phone call, from Ms Harmman, and ..."

"No - you mean, set the rotor blades in motion, Karen!" quipped CSO Linda.

Okay, okay, I thought resignedly ... I get the message.

"Miss Karen, Miss Linda ..." I said politely and respectfully - reverentially. 

I was worried sick, that one of these days they might finally deliver on their oft-repeated threat to have my brother helicoptered off the Omega 3 oil rig in the North Sea, where he worked as a chef, and instead be made to work for subsistence pay as a lowly community servant.

That was the heinous, constant threat that my two Sock Room supervisors held over me, whenever they deemed my obedience, compliance, or reverence towards them to be showing the least signs of flagging. 

At first, CSOs Karen and Linda had threatened to cane me into submission. 

But their cunning coercive idea to put my brother John's future fortunes into my hands had been their callous clincher - their malevolent masterstroke - in forcibly ensuring, that I stayed strictly in line and utterly subservient to them both ... In forcibly guaranteeing, that I continued to jump through their hoops.

Because I knew it was no idle threat: CSOs Karen and Linda had had me listen in on their walkie-talkie radio conversation with their superior. And I had heard Ms Harmman, laughing delightedly at the malevolent machinations ("precocious genius") of my two young Sock Room supervisors, as with her congratulations and commendations the local Authoritarian Female Party representative and MP for Canford had approved and signed-off on their sinister surety.

It was the way things were, now, in these new, Femocratic times. Under the female-friendly, all-female rule of Prime Minister Caroline Flynt and her Authoritarian Female Party government.

"Miss Karen, Miss Linda. I do, know my priorities. I do, want to obey you, and ... to please you."

Oh, how it galled me, to say it! 

How I hated, to hear the submissive sound of my voice: My servile, supplications; my obsequious overtures; my pathetic pleading; my excruciating entreaties ... The soul-destroying sound, of my downtrodden, absolute, unconditional capitulation - to those two!

"So why, then - Sock Boy! - is that pouty, sullen, resentful look still on your face?" demanded CSO Karen. "I've just said: I don't want to see it! Whenever you attend us, you will look pleased to do so!"

Maybe I should start thinking about Number One, after all, I thought ... While John worked on the Omega 3 oil rig as a chef, pulling in good money, I worked in the Sock Room as a sock washer, pulling inside out, the females of Canford's dirty socks.

But I knew it was no use: Even if I told them to go ahead and ruin John's life - influence horribly every facet of his existence, and exert diabolical control over his very quality of life - CSOs Karen and Linda would still do whatever it took to bend me to their will. 

For as long as I remained a community servant under CSOs Karen and Linda's supervision, I would remain under their complete control, be ruled by their AFP-vested power ... And be vulnerable, to the whims and wiles of their creative cruelties. 

And worse: If I was being all pouty and sullen and resentful and failing to keep them sweet, CSOs Karen and Linda would be sure to exert their kiboshing influences, with any such prospective employer as I might otherwise have successfully prevailed upon to offer me gainful employment ... And a route out of the Sock Room.

But then again ... for all I knew, CSOs Karen and Linda might already be doing exactly that: derailing my job applications. I had no solid, evidential reason to suspect that they were using their 'powers of office' to scupper my attempts at finding paid employment - but it wouldn't surprise me!

With the toepads of her uppermost ankle-socked foot, CSO Linda pushed my face leftwards until I was looking directly at the inches away sole of CSO Karen's, uppermost foot. 

I felt the familiar, unpleasant damp warmth, as with the ball of her foot and the pads of her toes CSO Linda maintained a gentle but insistent pressure, keeping me facing left.

The underside of the toe area of CSO Karen's uniform thin yellow cotton ankle-socked sole was level with my nose. The sock's bright yellow fabric there was damp and turned a darker, English-mustardy, colour; as it was at the heel, and at the ball of her foot. 

My face was so close, to CSO Karen's foot, that I was unable to avoid picking up her under-the-toes foot scent. It was an unpleasant odour that, by now, I knew well. Just as I did CSO Linda's, equally disagreeable foot scent. 

CSO Linda took another sip of the pre-work coffee I'd made for her. "Show us - double-oh-seven," she said, returning her now half-empty coffee cup to its saucer. "CSO Karen, first."

"Yes. Show me - Sock Boy!" said CSO Karen. "Get that pouty, sullen, resentful look off your face - and show me!"

I just got on with it, as I knew that I must ... 

Burying my nostrils under and amid the toes of CSO Karen's shoulder-perched, uppermost thin yellow cotton ankle-socked foot, I showed her - I showed them both. 

I showed, CSOs Karen and Linda, that if I wasn't exactly yearning to do their bidding: that if I wasn't straining at the leash, wanting to run and fetch their sticks; that if I wasn't chomping at the bit, eager to jump through their hoops; that if I wasn't bending over backwards, trying to keep them sweet - that if I wasn't reconciled, let alone embraced, in wholehearted commitment to their Number One priority personal service ... then, I was, at least, still indubitably in their power.

With my lips firmly sealed as dictated, I inhaled deeply, and discernibly - loudly. 

And when CSO Karen recrossed her ankles, compliantly I pushed my nose under the yellow ankle-socked toes of her other foot, where again it was warmly and welcomingly received in a nostril-sealing embrace. And I sniffed again, deeply and loudly. 

Because this, was what CSOs Karen and Linda demanded of me: A daily, pre-work demonstration of my continuing obedience, compliance, and reverence. 

And so it began: Week 4. 

The start of my fourth week, working as a community servant in the Sock Room of Canford town, south London.

Where I had been assigned, by the local Authoritarian Female Party representative and MP for Canford, Ms Harriet Harmman, to earn my weekly Unemployment Benefits payments ... by hand-washing, to a high and exacting standard, the females of Canford's dirty socks.

*          *          *


Monday. 08:30.

"Good morning - Community servant David double-oh-seven!" greeted my across-the-road neighbour from hell Norma Newlove, hectoring and goading me the moment I showed my face in the lower-level of the Sock Room.

Finally dispensing with my pre-work coffee footrest services, to my usual great relief CSOs Karen and Linda had told me to wash up the coffee things, and then dismissed me from their office.

But, as always, it was a case of 'Out of the frying pan, and into the fire'.

Looking down on me (both figuratively and literally), Mrs Newlove was leaning back comfortably, upon her accustomed black leather recliner: the nearest, of the six that were to my right of the six wooden steps that connected the upper-level to the lower-level of the Sock Room.

To my left of the six wooden steps, on that side of the 'Spectators' Gallery' overlook, were situated another six of the Sock Room's well-padded, black leather recliners ... a total of twelve. 

Originally the Sock Room had been furnished with six recliners: three, on either side of the six wooden steps. 

Last week, there had been ten recliners. But with six recliners now, on both sides of the six wooden steps, and with only the narrowest of gaps separating each of the recliners, at least now there was simply no room left to instal any more of the blasted 'Lazy-Girl' loungers.

In the next two recliners along to Norma, behind the two-barred safety rail of the 'Spectators' Gallery' overlook, lounged Norma's Sock Room cronies Gina Stainham and Cheryl Chubb.

At the moment Norma, Gina and Cheryl were the only sock-changing females attending the Sock Room. 

But they were enough. More, than enough. They were the bane of my life, these early-bird, long-stay, provisions-bringing, Sock Room 'regulars'. 

The Sock Room was their social club. Their den. Their playground. And I, was their captive entertainment ... a rich, endless source of malicious merriment.

"Community servant David - catch!" shouted Cheryl Chubb, tossing down to me her balled-up pair of dirty white socks. "There you go - sock washer! Get those clean! I've been wearing those socks since Friday morning. Oh - and, before you hand-wash them clean - don't forget to pull them inside out!"

"Thank you, Mrs Chubb," I said respectfully. "I ... I won't forget."

"Ha ha ha!" cackled Cheryl Chubb - at once again hearing in my voice, my pathetic unfailing reverence, and at seeing in my face, my brought-to-heel submission and subservience, and at recognising in my body language, my kowtowing obedience and compliance - no matter how much, she and her ill-meaning ilk Sock Room associates might try to provoke and goad me to a punishable indiscretion. 

It was audible, in the tone, the pitch, the timbre - the 'quality' - of the ghastly Cheryl Chubb's gleeful, gratified giggling, that the measure of my descent into brought-to-heel obedience and under-the-thumb servility could be discerned and comprehended - could be ... quantified.

By now, at the start of my fourth week as Sock Room community servant, the predominantly overbearing, domineering, subjugating sock-changing females of Canford, had, sad to say, stamped out of me almost all of the initial resistance I'd shown. And Cheryl Chubb - one of the very worse, of the 'stamper-outers' - knew it. 

In fact, by now it was common knowledge: Every girl, every woman, who came into the Sock Room to change her dirty socks, knew it.

Even the town's non-sock-wearing girls and women, who occasionally popped into the Sock Room just for the fun of witnessing my humiliations, knew it. 

And now, upon watching me reach up full stretch for her discarded pair of casually tossed balled-up dirty socks, and pull off a quite excellent one-handed catch like an outfielder cricketer preventing six runs as he spectacularly caught out the disbelieving batsman at the boundary, Cheryl Chubb cackled some more. "This is brilliant!" enthused Cheryl. "Weekends are boring. But now it's Monday morning - and normal service is resumed!"

"Come up here, double-oh-seven," Gina Stainham told me.

Obediently I complied with Mrs Stainham's order - in these new, Femocratic times, females didn't 'ask' community servant's, to do their bidding: everything was an order. It was the new normal.

"Turn around," ordered Gina, upon my ascending the six wooden steps and reporting to her recliner. And upon my duly obeying her and promptly turning around, Gina grabbed hold of the elasticated waist of my community servant's uniform white shorts and yanked them down to my knees. 

"Oh yes ... We gave you a damn good caning - Norma, Cheryl and me. Didn't we, double-oh-seven?" said Gina Stainham with great satisfaction, as she took a good long look at the by now fading evidence of her and Norma's and Cheryl's cruel handiwork (as per regulations, I wasn't wearing any underpants). "We really, let you have it. Didn't we?" said Gina, her tone wickedly prideful, and full of fond, wistful reminiscence.  
Gina Stainham was referring to what had happened, the Saturday before last.

When I had assumed upon myself, at triple-rate, the Standard Six caning punishment, that my girlfriend Tina - the heaven, of Burger Heaven - had been awarded, by Ms Harriet Harmman.

Eighteen strokes of the cane. Administered in public, in the High Street's stocks. 

Not, only before the gathered good folks of Canford. 

But also, before a daunting array of the UK's big channel big-name news teams; representations of all of the local, and many of the regional, channels; and even an assemblage of journos from foreign press and TV media, too.

Not least, among them, had been my (former!) evening TV news darling: the blonde, bubbly and beautiful Kathy Newton.

"Yes, Mrs Stainham," I said respectfully, in reply to her, hurtful, questions, about the many hurts that she and Norma Newlove and Cheryl Chubb had taken such gleeful pleasure in inflicting upon me. "You did."

Norma Newlove said, "Now, come here, Community servant David double-oh-seven, and take off my dirty socks, for me ... personally."

By now, the Sock Room was beginning to fill up. 

Filling up, with first lesson free period girls, who were popping in en route to one of the town's several High Schools, or to one of the two Girls' Schools, or to Canford College. And with women, who were on their way to work, or perhaps on their way to the town centre shops.

And filling up, with women, who, such as Norma Newlove and her Sock Room cronies Gina Stainham and Cheryl Chubb, were officially designated 'Ladies of Leisure', and in receipt of the AFP government's very generous, weekly Ladies' Living Allowance disbursements.

The Sock Room attending girls and women of Canford were coming in to avail themselves of a clean pair of socks. And to deposit their dirty socks, into one of the colour-coded wheelie bins, or into the industrial-sized open-topped hopper, that was signed: 'White Socks Only!'.

Except, all twenty of the colour-coded wheelie bins, and even the open-topped hopper too, were all overflowing now, with unprepossessing cascades of the females of Canford's dirty socks.

Sock-wearing, among the girls and women of Canford, had never been so popular. Particularly it was the long white, sport and leisure socks that were always in highest demand.

And I had no reason to believe, that my home town's females' high-majority and high usage uptake of Canford's Sock Room facilities, wasn't replicated in Sock Rooms all over the UK, by the sock-changing female populations of every other town and city. 

The backlog of dirty socks was growing mountainous. The situation was out of control. My noisome, stinky workload was unrelenting, overwhelming, and utterly unmanageable. 

One thing was certain - it couldn't possibly go on, like this.

Now, some of the sock-changing, time-on-their-hands females, upon espying the availability of recliners, eagerly availed themselves of one.

Still to change their socks, occupying their recliners, some of these more malicious-minded Sock Room frequenters cruelly did so to display to me as I worked, down in my one-man laundry 'domain', the soles of their dirty socked feet. 

Soon, all twelve of the Sock Room's well-padded, black leather 'Lazy-Girl' recliners were occupied.

At the moment, of the twelve reclining females, only Cheryl Chubb was barefoot.

And, as I'd come to know was usual for Cheryl, since she'd become a Sock Room denizen, the soles of her Monday-morning bare feet were dirty - days' unwashed, grimy, and overpoweringly stinky. 

I felt that familiar wretched, painful thickening of my throat. Signifying, that I was in imminent danger of breaking down, and succumbing to a self-pitying bout of blubbing. Even in front of this, all-female audience.

And it wouldn't be the first time.

I'd tried to resist, tried to be brave, tried to man-up ... but, at times, it just all got on top of me.

Just like last Monday - and probably every Monday, from now on - I was going to have to 'attend' Cheryl Chubb's filthy, Monday-morning feet. 

But first, I was going to have to ...

As bidden by my neighbour from hell Norma Newlove, obediently I reported to her recliner as summoned. And, complying with her personal service command to take off her dirty socks for her, I said respectfully, "Yes, Mrs Newlove."

At hearing the downtrodden, miserable-sounding monotone of my soul-crushed voice, Gina Stainham and Cheryl Chubb tittered and chuckled happily.

As did most of the other, newly arrived, reclining females. Girls and women, most, of whose unfriendly, gloating, goading faces - I knew well, by now. 

And I dreaded them, these, frequent-user, time-on-their-hands, first-period-excused female students, and Ladies of Leisure sock-changing females ... The Sock Room brought out the bitch in them.

"You, do the work - Community servant David double-oh-seven!" snapped Norma Newlove haughtily, playing me off to her sock-changing audience as I stood and waited for her to raise obligingly one of her blue-tracksuit-bottomed legs.

Meaning that, rather than putting her to the trouble of doing so, I should lift her 'Lady of Leisure' feet, and take the weight of her bone idle legs, as I removed each of her dirty socks. 

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully. Which elicited another wave, of tickled-pink titters and gratified giggles from the greatly amused onlooking, comfortably reclining females.

Norma Newlove loved an audience - and the more, the merrier. Mercilessly, cruelly, she loved to play me off, to Sock Room attending girls and women.

And to the further hilarity of the watching Sock Room attending females, Norma didn't do a thing to help me - hindered me, in fact - as with comical clumsiness I struggled to perform her belittling little chore.

But finally, and despite her mischievous ankle flexing, toe scrunching manoeuvrings, I'd managed to remove both of Norma's dirty, long white socks.

I wondered if there was a Norma Newlove style tormentress in every Sock Room, who ... for some reason, was taking full advantage of the situation, and exacerbating, maliciously, her Sock Room community servant's already wretched, unspeakably miserable predicament ... I found it all too easy to believe.

At least, although somewhat stinky - permeated, at the heels and the balls of the feet and the toe areas, with a vaguely cheesy malodour - Norma's socks were still reasonably clean. 

Norma had gotten into the habit, of taking home from the Sock Room on Fridays two spare pairs of the long white sport and leisure socks. 

A practice, I'd noticed, adopted by many of the Sock Room attending girls and women. Which was why, on Mondays, with a snide smile on their face lots of these sock-changing females sauntered in with not just one, but three pairs of dirty socks, for me to hand-wash.

"Now, before you hand-wash my dirty socks, Community servant David double-oh-seven," said Norma Newlove, "I want you to massage my feet."

How could things get any worse? 

Here we go again I thought, miserably. 

"You know the drill: Stand there, Community servant David double-oh-seven, down in your miserable workplace, at the safety rail," said Norma, pointing her finger. "At the foot of my recliner."

There was no question, of refusing or resisting my across the road neighbour from hell Norma Newlove.

In these new, Femocratic times, in the Authoritarian Female Party government's female-friendly UK, if any male citizen - especially, a community servant - upon receiving a request from a female citizen, denied, disobeyed, or even demurred ... serious, drastic consequences would be sure to follow, for the foolhardy male citizen.

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully ... Because I knew, the serious consequences that Norma Newlove would be sure to bring to bear: She would snatch up the Sock Room's internal phone, dial 01, to connect to CSOs Karen and Linda's office, and ...

I descended the six wooden steps. 

And in compliance with Norma Newlove's order, I stood in front of the bare brick wall at the two-barred safety rail, at the foot of Norma's recliner - the nearest, to the six wooden steps, on my right-hand side of the 'Spectators' Gallery' overlook.

It was going to be a long, long day, I thought wretchedly, as now I saw more, standing, sock-changing girls and women coming over to watch my humiliation ... and, to enjoy the notorious Norma Newlove's showing off: Her famed (and, by some Canford females, celebrated) Sock Room community servant baiting.

By now, at the start of the Sock Room's fourth week since its much trumpeted grand opening, the sock-changing females of Canford were coming to regard my neighbour from hell Norma Newlove as Queen of the Sock Room. 

And, esteemed in almost equally high regard by many Sock Room attending females, were the uncongenial Gina Stainham and the uncherubic Cheryl Chubb - Norma's sister Sock Room princesses. 

"Start with my left foot, Community servant David double-oh-seven," commanded Norma Newlove, like a queen talking down to some, no-consequence, no-account, lowly palace serf. And, a lowly palace serf, at that, who's one and only raison d'etre, was to attend and serve at the feet of his royal mistresses, and of their female entourage.

As if she thought I might not know my left from my right, Norma helpfully raised her bare left foot. And, as if thinking that further direction might be needed, Norma signally scrunched her toes.

Yes, Queen Norma, Your Majestic Royal Highness, I thought ... But didn't say.

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully. To another, soul-destroying elicitation of delightedly amused titters and chuckles, from Norma's appreciatively responding audience - from the watching, time-on-their-hands, nothing-better-to-do Sock Room attending girls and women of Canford.

Norma liked the sun, and I had to admit: she did tan beautifully. 

But the glamorous, glorious suntan that Norma had sported upon returning home from her recent Florida holiday, and that had made her skin glow like burnished gold, was fading now. The soles of her slender, shapely feet, now only lightly tanned. 

Maybe Norma would take herself off on another of those AFP-subsidised sunshine holidays - with UK-based Sunshine Holidays. And hopefully, she would fly away to top up her tan soon!

It had been the Sunshine Holidays travel firm, that Norma had holidayed with recently. And I remembered her laughing, about ... something. 

There had been something; an unusual occurrence - on both of her flights - that had tickled her half to death. Something, about the airline's Air Purification Technicians.

Whoever they were, Norma said that the Air Purification Technicians were now operating (and Norma had laughed at that, when she'd said: 'operating') on all Sunshine Holidays aircraft. And, that they were now operating on all flight destinations: short, medium - and, from only recently, even long-haul.

On Norma's toes, I noticed, she was wearing her usual cherry-red nail polish. That, from the day I'd complimentarily told her that I thought it was 'her colour' - because it set off her dark-brown eyes, and complemented her lustrous long black hair, and went so well with her gorgeous deep suntan - she'd unfailingly favoured the shade, ever since.

From my own, lower-level side of the Sock Room, I stood positioned at the foot of Norma Newlove's recliner. And very carefully, I took hold of Norma's left foot - I didn't, just, carelessly grab hold of it, as if it was just any old person's foot; oh no - this was Queen Norma, after all. 

It was an awkward business, using my hands at my head's height. But I persevered as best I could.

"Don't stop until I tell you, Community servant David double-oh-seven," instructed Norma Newlove.

Yes, Norma: I know the drill, I thought ... But didn't say.

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully - just as, who should enter the Sock Room, but no lesser personage than the very woman who had assigned me to the dreadful establishment: The Community Service Liaison Officer, and local Authoritarian Female Party official, and MP for Canford - Ms Harriet Harmman.

"What sort of foot massage do you call this - Community servant David double-oh-seven?" snapped Norma Newlove derisively, belittling my efforts right from the get-go, as from the corner of my eye, I watched Ms Harmman, assessing the state of affairs in the Sock Room. 

"Press more firmly - Community servant David double-oh-seven!" admonished Norma, as Ms Harmman made her way over to us. "Get your thumbs working!"

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully, as by now Ms Harmman was standing by, and looking on.

"Massage my right foot, now, Community servant David double-oh-seven," said Norma, after a couple of minutes.

I heard the familiar, crinkly sound, as one of the reclining onlooking females noisily opened another bag of crisps.

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully. And I gently returned her left foot to the foot of her recliner, and carefully I took hold of her right foot.

CSOs Karen and Linda now appeared on the scene: Ms Harmman must have advised my two young supervisors that she was coming over to see them, I thought.

"So - Community servant David double-oh-seven!" said Ms Harriet Harmman, as I worked my left and right thumbs counterclockwise and clockwise, respectively, into the ball of Norma Newlove's right foot. 

"So, this how you've let the Sock Room get into such a state: I come in here, and what do I find? Instead of getting on, and hand-washing all of these hundreds of dirty socks, you are spending all of your time - playing with ladies' feet?"

"No, Ms Harmman - no! It's not like that! It's Mrs Newlove! She ... keeps-" 

"Concentrate - Community servant David double-oh-seven!" ordered Norma Newlove. "Left foot again, now. And press more firmly!"

"There is nothing more unmanly," Ms Harmman told me, shaking her head in mock disappointment and sadness, "as a community servant, trying to attribute the blame for his ineptitude and inadequacies, to a lady."

Ah ... what's the point? I thought. 

This was just all one big, AFP joke. 

A huge, female-devised, female-participant - female-conspiracy - joke. 

The big joke, that community servants like me were the butt of.

But there was no question, of my saying 'No' to Norma.

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully, as I gently returned her right foot to the foot of her recliner, and carefully took hold of her left foot again.

"Community servant David double-oh-seven," said Ms Harmman, as firmly I rotated my thumbs into the bottom of Norma Newlove's left heel. "It can't possibly go on, like this."

"Switch back to my right foot, Community servant David double-oh-seven," instructed Norma. "And now, do my arch. But don't press quite so hard. Firmly - but just not, quite so hard."

"Yes, Mrs Newlove," I said respectfully.

Ms Harmman said sternly, "Until you have cleared this appalling backlog of dirty socks, Community servant David double-oh-seven, you'll work Saturdays."

"Yes, Ms Harmman," I said respectfully as now, at this latest cruelty, I felt a tear of abject, utter wretchedness seep from my right eye. 

But there was no point, in arguing. Nothing to be gained, in talking back: it would only lead to more cruelties. To more tears.

"All day, Saturday," clarified the Community Service Liaison Officer, uncompromisingly.

"Yes, Ms Harmman," I said respectfully.

"And, you will do it, for no extra remuneration," added the local Authoritarian Female Party representative, authoritatively.

"Yes, Ms Harmman," I said respectfully, as now, with the tears of misery freely coursing down both cheeks, I continued to work my thumbs, rotating them firmly - but not, too hard - into the arch of Norma Newlove's right foot.

"Yippee!" yelled Cheryl Chubb gleefully. "From now on, our footboy is going to be working on Saturdays!"

"Yay! Saturday-opening!" cried Gina Stainham. "And, if ... for some reason, double-oh-seven can't clear his backlog, maybe Ms Harmman will make him work Sundays, too!"

With a wink - that she clearly intended me to see, so that I'd be in on the 'joke' - Ms Harmman replied, "Well, Mrs Stainham ... If Community servant David double-oh-seven can't concentrate on the important work I put him in here to do, and reduce his shocking backlog within the next two weeks - at least, to the extent that his workload is contained within all of the dirty-sock receptacles, and with the lids all closed - well, Mrs Stainham, I'm afraid it may come to that."

If their joyful, pleasureful cries of approval were any indicator, all of the other sock-changing females present, too, thought it was an excellent idea for Ms Harmman to extend my normal, Monday to Friday working week, and make me work on the weekends, too.

Especially, Norma Newlove. 

"Wahey!" whooped my exultant across the road neighbour from hell. Her ecstatic, celebratory outpourings, much louder and more heartfelt, than those emitted by any other Sock Room attending girl or woman. 

Momentarily, Norma raised her right foot from my pampering, still massaging hands to wiggle her toes at me in a taunting gesture of gleeful triumph - but only momentarily: she wanted me back in service. 

Mrs Newlove was jubilant, ecstatic, blissful ... While my emotions, were the exact opposites.

It was yet another, crushing and catastrophic, devastating and demoralising victory that Norma Newlove was chalking up against me.

Ms Harriet Harmman said, "Community servant David double-oh-seven. On Saturday morning, you will report to the Sock Room at eight o'clock. And you shall continue to do so, every Saturday from now on until I tell you differently. Do you understand?"

"Yes, Ms Harmman," I said respectfully. 

Because there was no point, in arguing. Nothing to be gained, in talking back.

Ms Harmman went on, "I shall send one of my CSOs to open the Sock Room. And another CSO will come by in the afternoon to lock up at five-thirty." 

"Yes, Ms Harmman," I said respectfully.

Ms Harmman plundered on, "On Saturdays - and, on Sundays too, should it ... come to it - you will work unsupervised. After all ... I can rest assured, as to your motivation."

I saw a look, pass between my two young supervisors ... And to my deepening despair, I knew what it meant.

CSO Karen said, "Um, Ma'am. If there's any overtime going ..."

"Overtime, CSO Karen?"

"Yes, Ma'am. CSO Linda and I would welcome the chance to earn some extra money."

"But of course, CSO Karen. And, it goes without saying, that you and CSO Linda will be very generously remunerated. Of course, had I known you wanted it, I would have offered the overtime to you at once. But, as you are both already putting in a hard, Monday to Friday full working week, I'd thought ..."

CSO Linda said, "And, if it ... comes to it, Ma'am, CSO Karen and I would be available to work overtime on Sundays, too."

"Really? Naturally, you and CSO Karen would be rewarded extremely well, for working Sundays, too, if it ... came to it. But ... but why?"

CSO Karen said, "Ma'am, CSO Linda and I would like to be able to retire before we are thirty."

"But you could both retire right now if you wanted to," said Ms Harmman. "I mean, just claim the Ladies' Living Allowance. You can live quite comfortably on that."

CSO Linda said, "Yes, Ma'am. But CSO Karen and I want to go to the sun."

"The sun?"

"Yes, Ma'am," said CSO Karen. "We were thinking the Canary Islands."

"Oh. Oh, I see," said Ms Harmman. "Well, in that case, I can see why you'd want to put in the overtime. And that won't be a problem: there's always overtime available, for those CSOs, who want it. But I can tell you now, CSOs Karen and Linda: the AFP would be very sorry to lose you, at just thirty years of age. Very sorry, indeed. But, who knows - perhaps by then, you'll have had a rethink?"

Their faces colouring a little, CSOs Karen and Linda, deflecting, just said, noncommittally: "Ma'am."

From what I'd heard, during some of our prework-coffee footrest routines, I didn't think my two young Sock Room supervisors were going to rethink their early-retirement, going-to-the-sun plans.

CSOs Karen and Linda needed the overtime money, to be able to afford the considerable costs of setting themselves up in their dream apartment, and to have sufficient funds in their bank accounts to live comfortably and without any financial concerns, on their sun-drenched island of choice.

But, just then, CSOs Karen and Linda were saved from further uncomfortable conversation on this touchy topic with Ms Harriet Harmman, when an attractive young woman with black hair and brown eyes, and wearing blue overalls with the familiar sport and leisure socks logo over the right breast pocket, entered the Sock Room and announced cheerily: "Socks r Us!"

Ah, good, I thought: At least now, Norma would have to let me go, in a minute.

Smiling in greeting, CSO Linda said familiarly, "Hi, Stella. Be with you in a sec. Got much for us today, Stel?"

"Yeah, Lindz. I've got another big delivery for you in the van," said Stella. 

Reading from her delivery invoice, Stella said, "Mostly, it's those long white sport and leisure socks - the ones that you are getting through so many of," said the lady Socks r Us delivery van driver. "But I've also got for you two more consignments of Girls' School uniform socks: black, for St Esmerelda's, and navy blue, for St Kate's. And I've also got another thousand-pair consignment of the thin cotton yellow ankle socks, that you CSOs wear."

CSO Karen said, "That's great, Stel. Because Sock Boy can't keep up with demand - ha ha ha! As you can see, Stel ... you're just in time: The shelves are almost empty."

Ms Harriet Harmman said, "Stella, dear, would it be too short notice, do you think, to have another, similar size order of the long white sport and leisure socks delivered on Friday?"

"No problem at all, Ms Harmman!" replied the attractive lady Socks r Us delivery van driver brightly - so brightly, in fact, it made me wonder if Stella was getting a sales commission.

"Ah, good, Stella," said Ms Harmman. "Because I think we'll be needing them. With the commencement, this coming Saturday of our new Saturday-opening hours, the Sock Room is sure to be extra busy."

"Um ... I can see double-oh-seven's busy," said Stella, watching her 'little helper' massaging the reclining Norma Newlove's right foot.

Mrs Newlove said, "Oh, that's okay, Stella. I'm finished, with Community servant David double-oh-seven ... For now."

CSO Linda said, "Stel, while double-oh-seven unloads your van for you, are you coming for a coffee with Karen and me, as usual, down in the office?"

"Yeah, if that's okay. I'd love a coffee," said Stella. "Thanks, Lindz."

"Double-oh-seven," said CSO Linda brusquely. "You know the routine: Unload the van for Stella - and be quick about it." 

"Yes, Miss Linda," I said respectfully.

CSO Linda went on, "When you've done that, you know what to do: stock up the shelves, making sure you put each of the different types of socks on their own, designated shelves. But first - and you can consider this another little job for you, from now on: remove the socks' Cellophane wrapping or cardboard packaging, yourself, to save the ladies from being inconvenienced in future." 

"Yes, Miss Linda," I said respectfully.

"We'll probably be back up here, by the time you've done all of that. But if we're not, just get back to work. And, unless you want to work under my and CSO Karen's supervision on Sundays, too, as well as Saturdays, for no further remuneration, you'll need to work on reducing your backlog."

"Yes, Miss Linda," I said respectfully.

"I'll make sure he does, CSO Linda!" piped up Mrs Newlove.

Was there ever, a bigger 'joke'? I wondered miserably.

In the palm of her hand, Stella held out to me the keys to her Mercedes Sprinter delivery van.

And, addressing me with the brusque, authoritative tone, that, living under the female-friendly rule of the Authoritarian Female Party, seemed to come to females so easily now, Stella said, "Here, double-oh-seven. Everything in the van is for Canford Sock Room. So you'll unload the van quicker by using the sliding side door, rather than the back doors."

 "Yes, Miss Stella," I said respectfully.

The female Socks r Us delivery van driver went on, "After you've unloaded the van, sweep out any bits of sock lint and whatever. And then run a quick, just damp, mop over the floor for me. When you've done that, make sure you lock up the van afterwards."

"Yes, Miss Stella," I said respectfully. 

"And when I come back up here after I've had my coffee, I'll change my socks," Stella told me. "Another pair of dirty socks for you to hand-wash, double-oh-seven."

Stella wasn't from Canford. She was from Heeling.

Heeling was the nearby, south London town where the previously thriving - but, since the AFP's introduction of Sock Rooms nationwide, absolutely booming - Socks r Us company headquarters were based. It was also the site, of their main sock-production factory.

So, by rights, that was where Stella should be changing her dirty socks: in Heeling.

I was quite happy, to unload Stella's delivery van for her. I had no problem with that. 

And I didn't really, mind, her authoritative-toned instruction to sweep her van out, afterwards. Or even find objectionable, her further, bossy command to run "a quick, just damp, mop over the floor".

But, why should I, have to hand-wash Stella's dirty socks? I thought resentfully. 

Why should I, have to do the Heeling Sock Room community servant's work for him? I had enough on my plate ... But I wasn't about to put that point to Stella. 

And why? Because I was a community servant, with no rights. While Stella was a female citizen, with every right. 

Stella was free to change her dirty socks, in any Sock Room in the land - including Canford's. 

Yes, Miss Stella," I said respectfully.

Ms Harriet Harmman said, "Well, CSOs Karen and Linda ... I'll leave things in your more than capable hands, then." 

"Yes, Ma'am," said my two Sock Room supervisors together.

Ms Harmman said, "I'll have to get back to the Centre ... I'll need to see about getting some posters and notices printed and posted. And I'll have to book some announcement slots on local radio and TV, to let the females of Canford know that from now on their Sock Room will be open on Saturdays."

"Yes, Ma'am," said CSO Linda. "I'll put a couple of notices up here too, in the Sock Room. And then news of our Saturday-opening will soon get around by word of mouth, too. Because good news travels fast."

"Yes, it does. Good idea, CSO Linda," said Ms Harmman approvingly. "Good work, officers."

CSO Karen said, "Thank you, Ma'am. And thank you again, Ma'am. For the Saturday overtime."

"Oh, not at all, CSO Karen. Not at all. You and CSO Linda are most welcome. And, for as long as you want the overtime, you can always count on me to be able to find you, some sort, of community servant supervisory assignments."

"Thank you, Ma'am," said CSOs Karen and Linda.

Ms Harmman said, "I'll let you know when I've got the posters. So that you can send Community servant David double-oh-seven over to the Centre for one. He can put it up in the Sock Room window."

"Yes, Ma'am," said CSOs Karen and Linda.

"And Stella, dear," said the local Authoritarian Female Party representative and MP for Canford, "I'll confirm with Socks r Us, over the phone, that other big order for the long white sport and leisure socks."

"Thank you, Ms Harmman," said Stella. "And I'm sure that supplying the socks to you on Friday won't be a problem: If we have to, we'll just put in a request to the Heeling Community Service Liaison Centre." 

"Of course," said Ms Harriet Harmman.

Stella went on, "The Liaison Officer, Ms Jordon, will have some community servants drafted in; some extra, menial labour, supplied to us at no cost. Ms Jordon will assign them to us for the duration of our temporary emergency, to help us out on the factory floor and in the warehouse with production and packing. Some, of the community servants, will be assigned to work night-shift, and work solely on sock-packing."

"Excellent, Stella!" said Ms Harmman. "My mind is at rest: Ms Jordon will certainly make things happen - the community servants won't know what's hit them!"

And then, with a final wave goodbye the local Authoritarian Female Party representative and MP for Canford was bustling out through the Sock Room's double doors, on her way back to the Community Service Liaison Centre, to phone the printers, the local radio and TV stations, and ... Socks r Us.

Stella now followed CSOs Karen and Linda down the six wooden steps, on their way to the office. 

And, staring at the authoritarian threesome's retreating, going-for-coffee backs, my simmering resentment bubbled over and got the better of me.

"Enjoy your coffee ... Miss Stella," I said.

And even before the words were half-way out of my mouth, I was thinking: Why, oh why, can't you just keep it zipped?

With a squeak of her rubber-soled white trainers, the attractive lady Socks r Us delivery van driver spun around on her heels. Stella's dark brown eyes were glinting ominously; the threat of pain, apparent.

"If it wasn't, that I'd rather have you unloading my van for me, and then sweeping it out and mopping it clean," Stella told me, "I would take up CSOs Karen and Linda, on their offer, to let me make you sniff my stinky socked feet - while I used you as my coffee-time footrest!" 

"I'm sorry, Miss Stella. Very sorry," I blustered. 

But it was no use: I knew the damage was done.

"Miss Stella. I didn't mean, to-"

Interrupting me, CSO Linda said, "When we return from our coffee-break, double-oh-seven, prepare to receive the Standard Six. Administered, to your bared bottom, by Stella."

"Ha ha ha ha!" laughed my across the road neighbour from hell Norma Newlove delightedly.

"Well, double-oh-seven ...?" said CSO Linda sternly.

"Yes, Miss Linda," I said respectfully, realising I'd not responded promptly, as expected.

"You just never learn, do you - Community servant David double-oh-seven?" said Norma gloatingly. "You are going to be caned - at the foot of my recliner!"

Once again, Norma Newlove raised her right foot from out of my still pampering, reverent hands. Goadingly, she again wiggled her toes at me, in a taunting gesture of gleeful triumph.

Norma Newlove was happy. Blissful. Ecstatic.

While my emotions, were the exact opposites.

With the laughs, jeers and catcalls of the Sock Room attending females ringing in my ears, I went outside.

At the kerb, where she had parked it, was Stella's delivery van.

As instructed by the attractive lady Socks r Us delivery driver, I unlocked and opened the sliding side door of her white-painted Mercedes Sprinter van ... and I got busy.

And the only thing that was keeping me going; all that was holding up my morale, as I unloaded, swept, and mopped Stella's van for her, while she drank coffee with CSOs Karen and Linda, was the thought of seeing Tina - the heaven, of Burger Heaven - just as soon as I got out of the Sock Room.


Community Service continues, in Ch. 9.


This story is written by David, please send comments and appreciation to