Victorian Adventure (For Myself And Botox)
Posted 02 August 2012 - 07:52 AM
The station itself was larger than anything I had ever seen, I had to keep one hand pressed against my hat to keep it from slipping as I craned my neck to admire all the iron work up high, supporting a ceiling that was equally as large as any of the fields on my Father’s estate.
The people here were incredibly rude though; all seemingly too busy to stop when I tried to ask for directions, disorientated by all the movement and noise. One man just knocked straight into me as if he hadn’t even seen me, though at least he took off his cap and apologised afterwards.
I eventually found my way to the station hotel, a grand building of red brick and of gothic design, with a really splendid entrance hall of marble and gold that was peerless to any of the country halls I had visited. It was clear to see why London was the envy of the world.
After inquiring about a room at the front desk, I found the prices were rather higher than I would have liked, even for the cheapest rooms. However it was only a temporary measure until I found a nice little townhouse in a good location with a shop in the bottom where I could set up a small business to get me started as I made my way in the world.
When I went for my purse however, I couldn’t find it, embarrassment flaring red on my cheeks? Had I dropped it in the station? Left it on the train? In a panicked flurry I excused myself and went back to retrace my steps. I never found it again and when I had tried to beg a ticket master to send a telegram down the line warning the train which had now left the station in order to warn them they may have left with my purse, he had to explain a dozen times that it was pointless until I would finally listen to him and accept that I had probably been pickpocketed and even if I hadn’t, there was no way anyone in a 3rd class carriage would just leave a fine silk purse laying there if they spotted it.
The ticket master was kind enough to offer use of his telephone and to pay the charges if there was someone I wanted to call, but stubbornly I refused him, I didn’t want to just pack in my adventure just yet after all Alice had survived Wonderland, I could survive London. The truth was I had simply been too afraid to return to my Father’s scorn. I left the station with nothing but the bag of clothes I had brought with me. By the first morning of my frightful street life experience, these were gone too. I truly began to feel like the silly sixteen year old girl I was. Still a child really but regretfully old enough to inherit and be married off to a man I didn’t love. As terrifying as life was on the street, it still held some hope for improvement over the miserable ridge one of nobility I had run away from.
By my third day in London I had made it too the stinking banks of the river Thames. Here I observed children scavenging the mud flats at low tide of oysters and coins. The oysters I dared not eat despite the empty cramps of my stomach, for I had seen all manner of filth and waste wash down the greasy surface of the water, I had been educated well enough to be certain they would make me gravely ill. Coins on the other hand were worth squelching around in to mud for.
By midday my fine clothes were ruined beyond recognition and the tide was rising fast again. Great shouts calling out from every warehouse and jetty as heavy cargo filled barges prepared to take advantage of the swell. Despite only counting a miserable palm full of little bronze farthings and half pennies that amounted to little more than a shilling I knew it was time to start wading back towards the retaining walls as the other children were, or I risked getting caught by an expectant current.
It was then I spotted it. A glint of gold caught by the towering sun that made my hear skip a beat. I thought I had been lucky enough to chance across a sovereign but as I reached into the mud and got my fingers around it I released whatever it was big enough to be worth several sovereigns in gold weight alone. Was it an ordainment? A candlestick perhaps? I couldn’t tell, the gloppy mud stuck to it like glue.
A shout distracted me. Instinctively I looked up towards a small rowing boat that had been going up and down this part of the river all morning. I had paid little heed to it before, assuming it was maybe just ferrying work gangs from jetty to jetty as labourers worked load the barges. Now however, I noticed it’s arrow shaped bow was pointed straight towards me. Completely unladylike I stuffed the cold slimy muddy thing down into my brassiere and urged my limps to plough through the sucking mud as quickly as they good, the boat behind me making better speed. As I made it too the brick face of the embankment wall and began to madly scrabble upwards, I was aware of the splash of heavy boots hitting the singles behind me, the boat crew had beached and were jumping out. I heard a shout of ‘STOP’ but everything else was drowned out by the pounding in my ears and the yells and cheering of the river children who had by now all gathered along the embankment to spectate. I didn’t even dare to look backwards for patch of weeds I had hidden my shoes and socks in before taking to the mudflats, I sprinted across the stone cobbles of the streets barefooted. There was no way I prepared to surrender the find of lifetime, all my hopes telling me it was my second chance to make a life of my own here in London.
Posted 02 August 2012 - 04:45 PM
No matter what the street urchin has done, she can't possible deserve to be shot at by these men. They are no better than the hooligans that are constantly trying to steal my wallet.
It was then I decided, against my better judgement, to get involved. The outcropping of shops and stores along this street would funnel her through the alley that backed up to my building. I do mean my building. I own the whole block.
I pull on my cloak against the cool breeze and walk down the back steps of my private residence above some shop space I rent out. As I reach the ground floor I can hear a ruckus starting to move my direction.
The lock, stiff and rusty since I don't use this entrance very often, finally budges and I step out into the brisk air. I see the tattered waif running barefoot down the alley, obviously making some ground on her pursuers who are no where to be seen.
As she approaches, I step in front of the would be fugitive, "It seems you are in a spot of trouble. Duck in here and I'll hide you for a bit. I don't like them shooting at young women!"
I watch as she pauses and considers the options. I can see she is going to step inside, surmising that dealing with one potential hostile is better than dealing with a small mob intent capturing her.
"Quickly!" I urge her as I step back inside the door, "they were not very far behind!"
Posted 03 August 2012 - 05:58 AM
My instinctive action upon entering the building was to look for an escape route but it was rather dimly lit in whatever environment I was now situated in.
The squeaking sound of rubbing metal snapped by attention back behind me to were the stranger was locking the heavy door behind them. I pivoted on my heel to face them, aware I was now trapped, a sinking sensation dragging in my stomach as I concluded from my present experience of London that it didn’t pay to simply assume people were trustworthy.
Practically exhausted from my flight, my chest heaving beneath damp cotton as I sucked down breath in huge frightened gasps, I rallied myself and used the only defence I had ever known. Status.
“My Father is a Lord.” I warned the stranger, trying to keep my voice level. “He’ll have Scotland Yard looking for me and if you so much as touch me they will lock you away in the Fleet for the rest of your life.”
Confidence was the key to selling the ruse. In reality however I doubted Father had anyone other than the governess searching the rooms and the footman searching the grounds for me. I hadn’t told anyone about my intention to run away, not even kind Mrs Jennifer the cook.
As I began to slowly back away I bumped into something of thigh height. Whatever it was it caused me to screech in my heightened state of panic… so much for confidence.
Posted 03 August 2012 - 06:55 AM
I chuckle quite loudly, "The daughter of a lord! Why not go for being the daughter of the Prime Minister or claim to be a princess, fifth in line for the crown. Do you have any idea how ridiculous that sounds coming from you? Have you looked in a mirror? No proper lady would muck along the banks of this God forsaken river."
The heaving, dirty, tattered and barefooted girl stands her ground. I survey the contents of the store room and scrounge through the pile of leftover tennants belongings. Finally, I find it, an ivory inlaid mirror. I hand it to you so you can see how absurd your claim sounds.
"I offer you sanctuary, from heaven knows what, and you treat me as if I am the one chasing you," I retort, "What exactly did you do? An angry mob of men doesn't often chase a street person such as yourself for exercise."
Posted 03 August 2012 - 07:18 AM
I glare haughtily as the stranger mocks me, by no means used to such impudence but when the mirror is brought to my face I am shocked into silence as I behold a person who is almost unrecognisable to me and probably indistinguishable from the rest of scruffy dirty street urchins.
Now it is the strangers turn to act defensively, it appears I have hurt their pride or merely tested their patience. The chilled weight of the gold seems to press heavier against my breast as I am admonished but I know I cannot possibly tell the truth. Selling the gold is my one and only chance to make a living for myself, what guarantee did I have the stranger wouldn’t try to steal it from me?
My mind racked for some kind of good excuse. The first was that the men had captured me and intended to sell me as a slave (I read that sort of thing in my adventure novels) however it occurred to me if there was a price on my head the stranger might feel inclined to just grab me and push me straight back out the door hoping to make a cut for themselves.
In the end it seemed like honesty was the best policy, or at least part of the truth anyway.
“I don’t know! I was on the river mud looking for coins and they just started chasing me. They must have mistaken me for someone else, maybe a thief from the docks.” I pleaded my case in angst, concerned that at any moment now there might be a banging upon the door behind the stranger.
Posted 03 August 2012 - 09:54 PM
Just then the large, heavy wooden door was banged on as if it were about to be caved in. Your heart already racing, you shudder at the sudden interruption.
I hear a sound, the splatter of water on the stone floor. Thinking my roof has a leak developing, I look around only to discover the puddle is forming under you, between your bare feet. You stand paralyzed, afraid to move for fear of giving yourself away to the horde desparately seeking after you.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 09:38 AM
Then the absolute unexpected happened. I felt my knickers growing warm and a hot red flush upon my neck and cheeks to accompany it. The tatters of the long cotton pants beneath my petticoat grew wet down the legs and I followed the strangers startled stare down to my feet were urine splashed against my mud caked feet.
I simply couldn’t believe it. I hadn’t wet myself since I but an infant and yet I knew from the dampness I felt against my groin that wetness at my feet had come from no leaking roof.
The banging at the door is renewed with gusto and lifted from my petrifying spell of fear by the embarrassing incident. I dash under one of the store house’s reclaimed tables and draw the heavy dust sheet over me. I listen anxiously to world beyond the warm musty air under the table, waiting to hear if the stranger allows the thugs in or turns them away.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 11:06 AM
"Who is it!" I yell through the door, "What do you want? You've disturbed my tea!"
Several men shout and I can barely make it out. They want to search my store room though I deny them.
"Go around front, this door is locked!" I tell them as I slip a lock onto the hasp and snap it down.
The lock now serves two purposes. First it guarantees none shall break into the store room while I walk to meet them through the store front. Second, it provides me with the security that my reluctant captive does not sneak out or let them in to rob if she is indeed in league with the rough men that appeared to be chasing her. I know this all too well for I was once robbed this very way.
I walk through the crowded store room, dodging cupboards and racks of old clothes left by the seamstress that once rented the ground floor shop from me. Times were hard and she still owed me a months rent but I was too kind hearted to send her to debtors prison. She did bring me a loaf of bread or a pie from time to time so I felt she was an honest person or her poison was too weak to kill an old coot like me.
As I made my way past the retail counter and to the front door, I opened the inside door but left the security iron grating in place. The men demanded to be let in. I backed a way from their limited grasp.
"Now see here!" I shouted, "I shant be dealing with all of you. Who speaks for the lot?"
One man pushed his way to the front. You couldn't hear what he said but I agreed to speak with him. You remained frozen under the dust cover, trying not to sneeze at the stirred up particles.
"What exactly are you looking for?" I demand of the man in a harsh, loud tone, "Speak up, man, I'm a bit deaf in one ear!"
I was lying about the deafness but thought it might give you an indication of what I was planning.
"This shop has been closed for months," I state emphatically, "I have used it for storage and as my workshop since then. All that banging at the back door caused me to spill my tea!"
You can hear the man shouting when I finally tell the leader, "All right, just the one of you can come in and look around. The rest of you step back!"
I opened the metal grate and allow the one man in. Others look like they are going to rush me.
"NOT SO FAST!" I YELL ANGRILY, as I pull my saber, "I shall run him through if any one of you takes another step. I've been forgiving of your rudeness up to now. You have no right to barge in here and I'll summon a bobby if you do not stand back."
The sounds of several footsteps can be heard as I narrate the fishing expedition the rough men's leader is conducting.
"Nobody can get through that back door, I tell you," as we walk into the store room, "It has been locked since the last tennant skipped out on me, owing a month back rent. You entered through the only door that is functional."
The rough man makes some noises as he tries at the lock and rattles the door. He seems satisfied and even trips over my tea cup.
I pick it up, "I was working back here to get the shop ready for another tennant when your men startled me. Satisfied?"
He mumbles she can't have gotten far. On the way out he yanks the slip covers off of several things before I can stop him. To my surprise, you are not under the one I had seen you scury under. Where did you go?
"What exactly did this person do to you and your men?" I ask, hoping you were not a violent criminal, "Did they kill someone? Rob someone? Why are the police not involved?"
He shrugs it off as a matter between him and her and something she shouldn't have seen. I bid him good day at the point of my saber and tell him not to come back. Once he is gone and I have again secured the front enterance, I go searching for you.
"Miss, where are you?" I say in a normal tone, "They are gone. Quite convinced you were never here."
Posted 04 August 2012 - 12:16 PM
I hear a shout and then the sharp hiss of steel being drawn from scabbard. I have heard it before when Father practicing fencing in the yard or upon occasion when gentlemen have had too much to drink and honour is as easily sullied as a silk shirt.
I fear the worst. That my saviour has a razor pointed to his belly and shall have to call me out on pain of his own life.
I am wrong. I hear the commanding confident tone of the stranger who owns this building passing orders to the gang at his doorstep, clearly it is he who wields the weapon. In my defence? Despite the danger of the situation my saviour suddenly takes on a dashingly debonair character.
He is also clever. The searcher’s movements described to me as I listen to the pair’s footsteps growing closer and closer.
By gut instinct had been to make a dash for the back door but just as my hand begins the lift the dust cloth so I may check that my way is clear, I overhear that my purser’s attention has also turned to that door and I cautiously let the sheet down again so only a fraction remains above the floor through which I can see two pairs of boots as the back door is inspected.
I realised was the true opportunity both men’s backs were turned to me, and I doubted the rest of the men barred at the door would be able to see deep enough into the store to spy me as I scuttled across to the insides of a cabinet that had already been searched. By sheer fortune alone the click of my shutting the doors coincided with clank of the teacup.
It’s dark and cramped and I am growing uncomfortable in my wet undergarments but I assure myself with the knowledge that now I might be able to hide from everyone and sneak out at some point when everyone is gone. Of course I have full intentions of repaying my saviour whenever I’ve sold the gold and invested in a suitable business.
When things become quieter and it appears the others have left I hear the store owner’s voice calling out of me. He doesn’t sound at all threatening but I remained curled away and hidden into cabinet anyway… until an unstoppable sneeze puts a stop to it all that is.
Inwardly cursing myself but realising it could have been worse and the sneeze might have come earlier, I reluctantly climb out of the cabinet to stand and face the man who addresses me.
“I am here.” I announce, my voice quivering with the adrenaline that still pulses through me. “Thank you dearly sir for all of your assistance, I fear I would not have escaped without you.” I hesitate and teeth the tip of my tongue thoughtful as I consider my next request. “Would a kind soul such as yourself be willing to grant me a bath and fresh clothes before I am on my way?” I not only wished to be rid of my shamefully urinated clothing but I was also aware that after having seen my own reflection no self-respecting jeweller or goldsmith would allow me to step into their shop.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 12:31 PM
"First you don't trust me and then you wish to take a bath and take some clothes?" I cackle out loud, "You are one for the story pages, that is for sure!"
I lead you up the back steps that are concealed within the wall shelving. It is convenient to leave by other means some of the time. I show you to the lavatory where I instruct you on the use of the copper for making hot water.
"Don't use it all," I admonish you with a grin, "Take your bath and I will see if I can find some clothes befitting a lady of your breeding."
Posted 04 August 2012 - 01:31 PM
I am too flabbergasted to audibly protest and then once my countenance is recovered I can’t protest anyway because you have gone, leaving me to draw a bath for myself all by myself.
Feeling angry you would try me with just disregard and insulting sarcasm I stubbornly decide I will prepare the bath for myself but only to make point of it! Then whenever I too own a shop of my own and decide to invite you, you shall find yourself making your own bathes instead of my servants treating you.
The kettle is heavier than I expected and as I make the trips with it across to the deep bathing tub I spill scolding water over myself more than once. Screeching the first time in alarm, then merely wincing the other times as the hot water smarts my skin.
Eventually I have the bath water up to a decent level and, after having tested gingerly with my toe, a nice constant warmth to the water temperature. Please with my efforts I undress (more accurately described as, I peel my rags off) and get into the tub. Your lavatory floor is covered with mud and water but it doesn’t even occur to me this might be a problem, I thought the room looked a little cobwebbed and grotty anyway.
After having rubbed mud and grime off my skin and out of my hair until the water in the bath was the same colour as the Thames I leaned over the bathtub side to wear my tangled pile of clothes are and retrieve the piece of gold, placing it under the water with me to wash.
The gold glistens to me just beneath the murky surface. I fill the elation of greed swell inside of me.
Bringing the gold to the surface I’m surprise to find it is nothing like anything I had expected it to me. It certainly wasn’t similar to any of the gold artefacts Father kept. It was all lumpy and rough textured, I almost took it for raw piece of ore until turning it over and recognising a form taking shape.
It was very crude, I couldn’t imagine even a goldsmiths apprentice wanting to put their name to it, but I was very very certain it was supposed to be a figurative representation of a mother holding a child.
I say figurative because there wasn’t many features to the main body of the statuette other than a blob for the head and two bumps that I guessed were breasts. Rather large and engorged breasts, they certainly put my modest pair to shame.
I heard footsteps returning along the landing and of course there wasn’t any lock upon the lavatory door, so with a great slosh of water I sprung from the bathtub and over to where the towels were.
I had just enough time to stuff the statuette beneath folds of the stack and draw the topmost towel around me before you entered.
“Ahem. A gentleman knocks.” I addressed him scornfully as I adjusted my towel a little more securely around my personage. I was feeling the thrill of having nearly been discovered with my secret piece of gold.
I might have looked less like a street urchin now that I was clean but I didn’t look like a lady, I was dripping wet, my long black hair slouched down my back.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 03:26 PM
I shuffle a moment before setting the thing down on the stool.
"This is all I could find. I hope you are able to make due with this," I shrug my shoulders, "At least you will be covered until something else can be arranged."
I step back out of the room but listen at the door as you discover it is a very short sun dress and a large pair of bloomers. I chuckle to myself as I walk down the hall to my rooms and wait for you to come out.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 04:14 PM
One you had closed the door behind you I let my towel loosed and dry myself off as best as I can. My hair is a heaped mess, I would usually have servant to comb it out for me but I had just left it as it was. Afterwards I inspected the clothes you had left me.
"I can't be seen in these!" I yelped in panic as I lifted the sundress and bloomers. Had the fiendish man no consideration for my modesty, I would still be practically naked!
Dispite this I still donned the clothing anyway, prefering to be practically naked than actually naked.
Looking down at my bare legs I could see straight away just how scandeliously short the hem of the dress was on my, the frilly cuffs of the billowing bloomers sticking out like the feathers on a chickens thighs beneath, the dress must have belonged to a child.
The other issue was that there was no where to now stash my statuette as I didn't even have a brassaire. I did consider prohaps having it down the one of the legs of the bloomers since they were amply puffy enough to hide any extra buge. However they were quite loose fitting and didn't want the statuette to fall out at some point. For the time being I decided to leave it hidden amoungst the towels until a better solution presented itself.
Leaving the lavatory in quite a state, I proceeded down the hall in search of you, quite curious as I peered into different rooms about what sort of a home a London shopkeeper might be able to keep for herself. Though I hadn't the foggest notion of what your occupation really was, I gathered the impression at least that your abode seemed comfortable, so you couldn't have been poor unless the stories I had heard about poor people were unfounded.
At last I found you, my eyes shying away from your gaze as I notice you take in my ridiculous apperance but I try not to show my embrassement, the clothes are what I have come to talk about after all.
"Excuse me Mr... eh?" I pause and wait for you to fill in the blank before contiuning. "I'm sure your intentions were honest but surely you must realise these clothes are simply not appropreiate? There must be something else. Have you a lady neighbour who might spare some things?" I enquired, having recalled coming down a a backstreet that had at least a few other properties on it before I had been diverted into this one.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 04:45 PM
I continue on about my business, trying my best to ignore you without busing out laughing, "The only other things I found were the previous tenant's baby clothes. I doubt you'd want to wear those. On second thought a little whining brat like you could probably use a diaper change! You did wet my floor when we first met, after all!"
I don't think you liked that little jest at your expense but you had very few options at this point, "Or a spanking if you continue to annoy me."
Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:01 PM
"How dare you!" I exclaimed as you threated to strike me, using the demenitive term 'spanking', a man simply does not hit a woman! at least not until they are married and there is nothing thereafter she can say about it.
"Sir, if you wish me gone from this house then I shall gladly withdraw but I am a respectable woman and I cannot be publically dressed in this ridiclous manner." At least when I had looked like a street waif my face had been suitibly disguised by a layer of dirt.What if I was to go out as I was now, then ten years down the line when i had my business I was recognised by someone as 'that girl' It would be written about in all the gossip sections of the papers. My reputation would be ruined.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:26 PM
Your hair, still dripping, is leaving a wet spot on the floor, "You can't even comb your own hair. It is getting my floor wet or have you lost control of yourself again?"
I step toward you, further surprising you and lift up the dress to see if you have wet yourself. To your dismay, the bloomers are indeed stained with your urine.
"This will not do!" I shout as I leave the room but return quickly with a small bundle, "Ah, here we are. I'm going to have to put you in nappies. You obviously have poor toileting skills."
Posted 04 August 2012 - 05:38 PM
I gasped as you lifted my skirt and feebly attempted to bat your hand away. "Get off me!" I yelled but quickly became morsely silent as saw the damp cotton that sagged dripping between my thighs. This time I didn't even have the excuse of claiming it was fear, just what exactly was happening to me?
I am cowered by your shouting, reminded of before when you lifted your sabre to the gang of thugs, I fear now that yours is not an anger I wish to inccur and soon I begin to feel tears prick my eyes as the helplessness of my situation settles on me. I am not in control... in any sense of the word.
"Please." I beg in whimper as you speak of nappies and it isn't difficult to guess what you've just brought into the room with you. "I am toilet trained. I have been since I was two years of age. Please don't force me to wear those. I don't know why i'm having accidents, this doesn't usually happen." I insist desperately, knowing I had no way of physically over powering the fully grown man.
Posted 04 August 2012 - 07:00 PM
The nappies are spread out on the dressing bench before you, clean, white and oh so thick. You gulp, your exit blocked and me appearing more imposing that before.
"Now, you can willingly be placed in a nappy to protect my household and property," I point at the protective garments before you, "Or I can boot you out into the street on your soggy bottom and be shed of you. My house, my rules, no exceptions."
I can see your lower lip quivering as the reality of your predicament settles into your thoughts. No resources, not a shilling to your name and cut off from retrieving the golden artifact. I see a tear well up in your eye and your shoulders slump. I have you in the palm of my hand now.
Posted 05 August 2012 - 07:51 AM
I try to assure myself that this is only a temporary measure as I feel your hands working around my nether regions but I am too ashamed to watch. I try to tell myself that somehow I will manage to get my statuette and leave this house, or that maybe I will be able to strike a bargain with you and earn some proper clothes before departing this place, yet tears trickle hotly down my face as I feel the cloth of the nappies pressed against my stomach and then pinned in place. They sensation of enveloping cloth around my waist and between my thighs serves to emphasis the fact I am probably trapped here now, entirely at your whim.
“What will you do to me now?” I ask fearfully through my tears, still lying down with legs spread apart and swaddles of thick nappy presented towards you. In panic I offer you suggestions before something awful can come to you mind. “I can work for you, earn my stay until I can afford appropriate clothes, and then I’ll be gone from here I promise.” I struggle to find any skills I have learned over the years that might be helpful to you. I am still unaware of your profession.
“I am versed in literature, algebra, arithmetic and history.” I began by recounting my lessons, of which literature and history had been the only subjects my hardnosed tutor had felt I had any aptitude in.
“I can speak both French and German.” Though that was only because my mother was French and we had important relatives on the continent and Father wanted me to be prepared in case several cousins and second-cousins all died in some spontaneous circumstance leaving me with some overseas inheritance.
“I can ride and play music and sow embroidery.” Counting of my hobbies in desperation.
“I… ah?” Had nothing else to say.
Posted 05 August 2012 - 09:12 AM
I allow you to sit up and help you off the table, "There is a bedroom down the hall. You can stay there. Of course, it needs some cleaning as well. It has been a long time since anyone but me has lived here."
The room is smaller than some but has a bed, a dresser and a wash basin. It is dusty and the lone window is quite dirty.
"I'll expect you do your laundry and mine. I only have a small supply of nappies so you will need to keep some on hand at all times until you can prove you have stopped wetting like a scared puppy," I say, "I'll see about getting you some maid uniforms if you will lower yourself to wear a servant's clothes."
I stop to look at you, a short sun dress with thick nappies showing underneath, I hold out my hand, "Do we have an arrangement?"
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