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The loves of a musical student

The loves of a musical student

Anonymous

 

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CHAPTER I

As I intend only speaking of those little adventures in which I have been engaged with the fair sex, it would be superfluous were I to enter into a tedious detail of my parentage, schoolboy pranks, or other tittletattle foreign to my present subject; I shall therefore commence with an incident well calculated to prove how absolutely impossible it is ever to erase a first impression from the youthful mind. The circumstance I allude to occurred when I was in the seventh or eighth year of my age; my parents had just finished breakfast, the table was not yet clear of the equipage, and I was standing before the first enjoying the luxury of a plate of well-buttered toast — a treat my father would not indulge me with but on extraordinary occasions. I remember my father was more than usually jocular that morning, and I was ordered by him not to move from the spot where I stood until he called me.

Now follows a striking instance of how very cautious parents ought to be before they indulge in certain pleasant freaks in the presence of children.

I had not stood many minutes in the position I have already mentioned, before the quick sound of half-suppressed emotion, which proceeded from the farthest end of the apartment, caused me to turn my head to the direction from whence they proceeded; the glance was but momentary — my eyes instantly withdrew themselves from the object that met their view, while a burning blush ran like lightning through every tiny vein; a feeling, for which I could not then account, seemed to overpower me. I stood trembling — wishing, yet not daring, to take another glance; yet never, never shall I forget what I that morning saw.

At length my mother caught my stealthy sidelong glance, and quickly rising, she hastily advanced towards me and started me off to school, at the same time chiding my father for his stupid folly, as she called it.

But the object I had contemplated still haunted my imagination, and I was constantly contrasting the trifling affairs I saw at school with the picture I had seen on so grand a scale.

But nothing could exceed the pride I felt when, as I waded through the mud-stained pool, I saw that I excelled some older boys in certain points. And now the day-dreams of a youthful imagination filled my soul with undefined sensations; and often when the glare of broad day disturbed my fairy visions of delight, I have almost cried with sheer vexation.

Behold me now eleven years of age, and Miss Venetia J*** but just turned ten, yet taller than myself, with features beautifully moulded, and light and flowing locks in graceful curls adorning her lovely shoulders; her parents inhabited the next house to that occupied by mine, and very frequently would they chat together. I never failed on these occasions of seizing every opportunity to make myself agreeable to the charming Venetia, and was tolerably successful. Often have I climbed the garden wall to have a game of romps with her I really thought my soul adored. But still my curiosity remained ungratified. I longed, yet feared, I should offend by asking such a favour; until one day, having been taken by some of my father’s visitors to Bartholomew Fair, the scenes I there beheld so delighted my boyish fancy, that the next morning, having coaxed my fond mother to let me have some bed-furniture, I erected in the garden what appeared to me a most magnificent theatre, when I must needs invite my most intimate schoolfellow to partake my pleasure. Master William had likewise prevailed on a young girl, the daughter of a neighbour, to accompany him, and after performing a variety of gambols, similar to those exhibited by the showman the preceding evening, Master Billy, who, by the bye, knew much more of the nature of fairs than I did, exclaimed, “All in to begin!” We accordingly crept under cover, and Billy began to kiss and tousle his partner most heartily, she being not able to resist his ardour in consequence of her being overcome by convulsive peals of laughter.

For my part, I was so completely lost in admiration of his conduct, that I did not perceive the absence of Venetia, but no sooner was I convinced of her departure, than I immediately went in pursuit of her, and fortunately perceived her at the moment she was entering a little temple at the extreme end of the garden. I paused for a moment, uncertain how to act, till calling to mind how faintly Billy’s lass had resented his freedom I resolved to be equally bold; thus determined, I stole gently to the door, which she had not taken the precaution to fasten, and entering, seized her in my arms and despite of her struggling nearly stifled her with kisses; till at length I had-satisfied my curiosity.

Miss Venetia was, or affected to be, exceedingly indignant at the freedom with which I had treated her, and forcing herself from my embrace, left me with these words: “I am ashamed of you; what do you think my mamma will say when she hears how impudent you have been?” But, as mamma never lectured me on the subject, and I was allowed the same freedoms more than once afterwards, I had every reason to believe that the sweet girl was of too forgiving a temper to bring trouble upon one whose only fault was a desire to improve himself in the mysteries of nature, with an earnest intention of imparting his knowledge to her on the earliest convenient opportunity.

To what lengths I might have been carried had I continued near the dear girl I will not presume to say; but my father dying about this time, and my mother finding it necessary to retire from the cares of housekeeping, I had no further opportunities of pursuing my natural studies with my charming Venetia, whom I left with feelings of regret.

Nature having favoured me with what my friends were pleased to call a very melodious voice, which developed itself at an early age, and being from my infancy extravagantly fond of music, capable even when four years old of singing several songs with some little taste, my mother was in consequence continually importuned by her acquaintances to attend all their small parties, and being, like most indulgent parents, proud of the praises lavished on her darling child, she seldom refused those invitations.

This of course instilled into my mind an early love of gaiety and company, which was the means of bringing me the acquaintance of several blooming girls, with whom I would very willingly have pursued those studies from nature which I had so pleasantly commenced with the fair Venetia; but the fear of not being equally successful deterred me.

About two years after our separation, I was introduced to Mr. H***ll upon whom, as he was partial to my singing, scarcely a day passed in which I did not call. But neither Mr. nor Mrs. H. was the magnet that attracted me thither. I had more than once observed, listening at the door whilst I was singing, a tall, good-looking girl, about fourteen years of age, who lived as servant with Mrs. H. On the occasions alluded to, she always appeared particularly delighted, a consciousness of which made me soon prefer the kitchen to the parlour.

Calling one evening when Mr. and Mrs. H. were engaged on business, I followed the charming girl downstairs, where I requested permission to wait till they were at liberty.

I saw, or fancied I saw, evident marks of satisfaction in the face of young Mary, as she very readily handed me a chair. Observing a book lying upon the table I took it up and found that it was the History of a Magdalen; and sup posing she had been reading it, I begged she would not suffer me to disturb her, and at the same time presenting her the book, I drew my chair closer, and said, “As I am myself very fond of reading, I will, with your permission, look over the pages with you.”

I soon perceived, however, that her thoughts were not entirely fixed on the book, which she soon closed and, turning to me, remarked how delighted she had been the evening before with a song she had heard me sing; and having named it, I began, in my very best manner —

My heart with love is beating;

and, as a reward, clasped her round the waist and stole a kiss from her pouting lips, she making but a slight resistance.

I now drew my chair still closer, and turning the conversation to the book before mentioned, found an opportunity of remarking, “What a number of those unfortunate females were then living in the neighbourhood.”

Wishing her to think me more of a man than I really was, I repeated this speech, which I had heard in conversation a few days before, with an air which seemed to imply a more extensive knowledge of the subject than I really possessed, but I was greatly surprised at her answering, “There is, indeed; and I was very near being made one myself. I became acquainted with a young girl, who it seems was no better than she should be; but my mother, seeing us together, gave me a severe beating and desired me never to be seen in such company again.”

I now began to suspect that my fair companion knew more than she chose to confess; and, drawing her lips close to mine, I stopped her breath with the ardour and rapidity of my kisses. She struggled, and declared that unless I remained quiet, she would leave the room.

However, this threat did not deter me; I found her struggles grow weaker and weaker every moment, and was satisfied that her anger was mere affectation.

Emboldened by this thought, I proceeded to still greater liberties.

Plunging my right hand beneath her bodice I laid a firm but gentle grasp upon her left breast, pressing and moulding it tenderly, while now and again I touched the nipple with an amorous finger. Her lovely bosom heaved wildly at my rude attack; she shuddered, apparently at my violence, yet no angry word escaped her lips; but, when she found that I was endeavouring to make further encroachments, with a sudden effort she released herself from my embrace.

I trembled with emotion; and though I expected a repulse I follow her.

She sinks into a chair, and with her hands conceals her lovely face. I fall upon my knees and crave forgiveness. I seize her hand with the most indescribable emotion; I beg but one kind word to seal my pardon — which she refuses! Ah! can I believe my senses? She smiles upon, me! Her hand-oh, transport! — now returns the pressure! In a moment after, I forgot my promise and need forgiveness more than ever. She shakes with apprehension.

“For mercy’s sake! I’ll call my mistress! I’ll —” But I turned a deaf ear to her entreaties and pressed her still closer to my breast; vainly she endeavoured to extricate herself from my embrace; till at length, finding every effort useless, she abandoned the attempt; a flood of tears flowed from her beauteous eyes, she threw her arms around my neck, and her head sunk gently upon my shoulder.

As if by instinct my hand wandered up her petticoats, and by way of her slender ankle, swelling calf and rounded thighs, passed swiftly to the door of the temple of love which at once opened and closed upon the entering stranger.

Thus we remained several minutes, in a dream of blissful insensibility; and notwithstanding my conviction that my happiness, great as I imagined it to be, was yet capable of increase, I sought not to pursue the advantage I had gained; I understood not the precise nature of the end which I wished to gain, and although my kisses were returned with fervour, the virtue of the blooming Mary remained pure as before my ardent declaration of love. It was certainly not my forbearance that she had to thank, but my entire ignorance of the why and the wherefore. I understood that something more was wanting to complete my happiness, but knew not how to secure the phantom of my boyish dreams. Nature, however, is a kind instructress, and I have no doubt would have solved the problem in a few minutes more, when suddenly the parlour door unclosed and Mary was called up to clear the supper table.

Thus did my evil genius interpose and dashed the cup of happiness from my lips before I had tasted of its sweetness. I know not whether Mary had grown more cautious or that her mistress suspected my intention, but certain it is that although my visits were constantly repeated I never found an opportunity of completing my conquest.

It would be tedious to enumerate the various adventures I met with at this period, which were interrupted in a similar manner to the one just mentioned. So frequently did they occur that I began to despair of ever being made supremely blessed, and thought that fate itself conspired against my happiness.

Previous to relating my next adventure it will be necessary to observe that my mother had become acquainted with a young widow; she had a daughter some two years younger than myself who was really a very beautiful girl. They took apartments in our house, but in consequence of mother giving up housekeeping, the acquaintance was discontinued, till one day meeting the daughter by chance she insisted on my calling on mamma, who expressed great delight at seeing me.

At parting I gave her my address and the acquaintance was renewed even more intimately than before.

I was now fourteen years old, and Jane had just turned twelve, but was to all appearance quite as old as myself; her mother was nearly thirty, but a beautiful shape and a youthful countenance made her appear not more than twenty-five.

Miss Jane appeared to my admiring fancy the very person I should in a few years select for a wife; and this being my determination, I was, as may be supposed, absent from their dwelling as seldom as possible; in fact, I could go nowhere without my dear Jane accompanying me, and few lads of my age saw more company abroad. My voice and judgment had greatly improved, so much so, that Mr. W***ll, an eminent musicmaster, had, on hearing me sing, offered to procure me an engagement at one of the patent theatres, which offer, not according with the wishes of my mother, was rejected. Notwithstanding this, I was continually complying with the solicitations of professional gentlemen to sing at their concerts, etc., at most of which Jane was my constant companion.

On those evenings when I had no musical engagements I invariably visited the widow and her amiable daughter, and now I began to perceive that the widow herself became more pointed in her attentions to me, which increased at every meeting. She was a passionate admirer of music, and was continually entreating me to sing; on these occasions I frequently, in the midst of a song, observed her eyes fixed steadfastly on my face, while the tears flowed plentifully down her cheeks; and more than once she pressed my hand and wished that I was older; upon my innocently inquiring the cause, she would waive the subject; at other times she would gaze upon the portrait of her late husband, and afterwards gazing upon me, remark the striking likeness I bore to him, and saying that that alone was sufficient to make her love me more than all the world besides.

I now began to suspect that it would be my own fault if I did not improve these hints to my own advantage. I have before observed, that although nearly thirty, she looked much younger, possessing a beautiful face and figure, and when you add to these attractions the powerful vanity of a boy, not yet fifteen, to find himself beloved by a fine woman, no one will wonder at my determination to take advantage of the sentiments the widow entertained towards me.

Thus resolved, I seized an opportunity, when she expressed her regret that I was so very young, to ask why that should be a cause of sorrow to her. It would be impossible to describe the confusion that seemed to overwhelm her at this question. She endeavoured to change the subject, but I was not to be diverted from my purpose. Finding me so resolutely bent on receiving an answer, no longer hesitating, she threw her arms around my neck and, laying her head on my shoulder, acknowledged that she loved me tenderly and felt dreadfully unhappy at the conviction that the difference of our ages prevented even a momentary hope that I could ever become her husband.

I endeavoured to convince her that the difference of a few years was of little consequence to happiness; and that, had I but the means of maintaining a wife, I knew no woman I should prefer to her; although, heaven knows, I had but little thought of matrimony in reality. But how easily we are persuaded to believe what we wish.

She told me that her father — whom I knew to be immensely rich, although from family disagreements he now withheld his bounty from her, his once favourite daughter — would, she had no doubt, when he heard of her determination to marry, do something for her.

The ice being thus broken, we indulged in certain little familiarities without restraint. Jane was now sent to an evening school in order that we might be more frequently alone, and was generally despatched to her bedchamber shortly after her return; when the widow, with her head reclining on my shoulder, or her cheek, and sometimes her lips glued to mine, would suffer me to finger her swelling breasts, and then would strain me to her heart, and stifle me with kisses; beyond this all was perfect innocence.

It may easily be imagined in this sort of toying how swiftly the moments passed away; and one eventful evening, we thought not of the hour until the watchman, calling half-past one o’clock, roused us from our dream of pleasure.

I instantly arose, and was about to take my leave, at the same time observing that, as I was in the habit of occasionally sleeping with a friend, I should repair to his house in preference to disturbing my mother at that unseasonable hour. This she strenuously opposed, and being assured that my mother would suffer no uneasiness from my absence, made up a bed for me in the front room and then retired to her own chamber.

I now addressed myself to sleep, but in a short time was awoke by a slight noise in the room, and on rising to discover the cause was highly astonished to see the door open and Miss Jane in her nightdress enter the apartment.

Ere I could recover from my surprise at her unexpected appearance, she proceeded to inform me that her mother could not rest while I remained in such an uncomfortable situation. The fire in the bedroom had not been extinguished, and if I would remove my bed thither and place it before the stove I should at all events suffer less from cold than in the large apartment I at present occupied. I lost no time in complying with her request, and my thoughts being perfectly innocent, notwithstanding the peculiar situation in which I found myself, I was soon wrapped in the downy arms of sleep.

I awake — for now in trembling accents I hear my name pronounced! With tender sighs and faltering tongue she expressed her anxiety.

“My God!” she said, “never till this moment did I feel how very dear you are to me, never could I forgive myself should your health be injured in consequence of the uneasy manner in which you are compelled to pass the night.”

In vain did I assure her that I felt perfectly comfortable; she begged I would allow her to quit her own and share her daughter’s bed; this I would by no means suffer, and wishing her goodnight, I once again addressed myself to sleep. Not so, however, did the widow, for after a pause of some moments she thus resumed the conversation.

“My dearest boy, think me not imprudent when I say I cannot sleep in quiet while you remain in that comfortless position. It shall not be, I will not sacrifice to false delicacy the health of him I hold most dear.

Why should I doubt your honour? Have I not already proved it in the many hours we have passed together, and alone? Can I forget the many opportunities my fondness hath yielded you, which you have not attempted to abuse, then why should I doubt you now? Promise me, then, promise me faithfully that you will not abuse my weakness, and share my bed till morning.”

I did not hesitate to make the desired promise, and the next moment she received me in her arms.

As I found upon pressing my lips to hers that she uttered no complaints, but even condescended to return my kisses, I forgot my usual caution and, encouraged by her innocent caresses, was proceeding to still greater liberties when, with a sudden effort, she forced herself from me, exclaiming in a voice more stern and decided than ever she had used to me before, “Is this the way you keep your word?”

She turned from me as she spoke, and, inexperienced as I was in the ways of love, it is impossible to describe the chilling effect of these words, uttered in anger, as they really appeared; and, strange as it may seem, yet not more strange than true, I drew myself to the utmost verge of the bed, and lay till morning without again daring to approach her.

Soon after daybreak, I heard my bedfellow preparing to arise, but still I feared to speak or look; the words she last uttered were still ringing in my ears, and shame so overpowered me that I thought it was utterly impossible I could ever look on her again. At this moment, having dressed herself, to my great surprise, she walked to my side, and kissing me with the greatest fondness thus expressed herself: “My dearest love, I can judge by your feelings how hard a victory you have gained over your passions; your conduct this night has rendered you more dear to me than ever. It must be my care to avoid such temptation to us both in future.”

With these words, and a kiss still warmer than before, she left the room.

I instantly arose, we breakfasted together, and I departed to excuse my absence in the best way I could to my mother, who never suspected the truth of the story I invented.

My visits to the widow were now repeated more frequently than before; all our former toyings were acted over and over again, and as each day made me somewhat bolder so each day would I venture some trifling encroachment on the freedom I had been permitted on the preceding one; and I at length came to the determination, should fortune favour me with an opportunity similar to the one I have but now described, that I would avail myself of it to the fullest extent.

The wished-for period at length arrived; I had learnt several new songs, which I had sung with the greatest applause at several morning and evening concerts, and on the night in question, being entirely disengaged, I told my mother not to be alarmed if I did not return till the next day as I had promised to sup at the house of a patron, who would in all probability insist on my taking a bed, the party usually being a late one.

I had not seen my love-stricken widow for two days, and her joy was excessive when I informed her that it was in my power to spend the evening with her. Her daughter Jane, being rather unwell, retired to bed soon after tea, and we were left alone.

She had seen by the concert bills where I had been engaged, and gently chid me that I had not previously sung them to her, begging I would not deprive her of the pleasure a moment longer. I drew my chair close to hers; and as, in the intervals of singing, I perceived tears of pleasure trickling down her cheeks, I would clasp her slender waist and stop her breath with kisses.

The clock now striking one recalled her to herself; and she started up, reminded me of the hour, and urged me to depart. I gave her what I termed a parting kiss, put on my hat and gloves, and proceeded towards the door; when, suddenly assuming a look of extreme vexation, I exclaimed, “Can anything be more unfortunate! I find I have forgot to bring my key and my mother is now absent on a visit.”

She was evidently confused for a moment, but her confusion speedily gave way to fears for my safety, as I said: “Well, no matter. Good-night! I can amuse myself by walking through the town till morning.”

She hastily seized my arm, exclaiming, “Oh, not for! worlds! Exposed all night in the open street, what dangers may not menace you — I shudder at the thought. No, since it has so happened, I will sit up with you and converse till daylight.”

After some further parley, I suffered myself to be persuaded. We sit awhile. It is now my turn to entreat her to retire; but long I strive in vain; the recollection of the former night deterred her. My entreaties are renewed: “It will make me wretched to deprive you of your rest; let me prevail, my love. What should you fear? I feel no way fatigued. Go, dearest, and when you are in bed, I’ll sit and read you to sleep. I did not rise till late this morning; believe me, I require no rest. You ought to trust me.

Have I not given you powerful proofs that I can be prudent?”

She threw her arms around my neck, and softly answered, “That you have, indeed. Well, then, I will retire.”

In a few minutes I followed. I seated myself on the bed and, taking her hand in mine, began to talk of love; then, reclining on the pillow, I pressed my lips to hers. She begged me to desist.

“Nay, my love, surely, you do not fear me thus? When once before I lay within your arms, I could obey you, and surely, even though you are now completely undressed, you cannot be in danger.”

She sobbed convulsively, and faintly said, “It is true, indeed, I ought to feel secure.”

I interrupted her.

“You are secure; nay, so fervent is my love that I could lie for weeks within your arms and not abuse your confidence! Once I have proved my faith; now give me leave to prove it a second time.”

But during the foregoing dialogue I had, unperceived by her, contrived to disencumber myself of my clothes in such a manner that in less than a minute after I said these words the candle was extinguished and, without further parley, I leaped into bed, clasped her in my arms, and parting her lips with my tongue drove it far into her mouth where it encountered her own in a caress of unparalleled length and sweetness.

So sudden was the action, so great the surprise, that she was unable to repulse me; and when she strove to speak my kisses stopped her breath and robbed her of the power. In the end, despite her tears, reproaches and resistance, I found myself between her thighs, and though she only ceased to oppose when her experience assured her she had nothing left to fear, the fact remains that my yard, tense and elongated beyond all bounds by the protracted struggle, at length buried itself to the root within the velvet depths it had so long striven to penetrate and poured its treasures into the delicious receptacle from whose hidden stores fell the reciprocating dew of love in a soft and simultaneous shower. From this moment restraint was at an end and — to quit for an instant the polite forms of speech to which my chaste reader is accustomed — we enjoyed one another at every hour of the day and night, in every conceivable and inconceivable position and upon almost every article of furniture in the house. In this last category must be included the mantelpiece! Perching herself on its broad ledge thegay widow, dressed in an outrageously low-cut gown, would lift her silken petticoats to the waist, open her legs to their widest extent and lock them around my loins as I stood on a chair between her thighs. In this quaint and original position the spear of love was pointed to its goal, and scarcely needed the guidance of her dainty fingers (which, however, was invariably given) to plunge between the smiling rosy lips that lay open and pouting to receive it.

The first check to my happiness was occasioned by the death of my only remaining parent; and it is no more than justice to declare that the endearments of my amorous widow tended greatly to assuage the grief I felt at this irreparable loss.

But as a long continuance of perfect happiness is not to be expected in this vale of sighs and tears, I soon found out that love, with all its sweets, was not unmixed with bitters — which flavour, however, at the first, infused with moderation, was not unpleasant, and rather gave a zest to the luscious banquet; but, like good wine, which gathers strength with age, the bitters every day did more and more preponderate, until at length the sweets entirely evaporated; or in other words, the kind attentions of my charmer became confoundedly troublesome.

In fact, we never walked abroad but she discovered, or what was worse imagined she discovered, some wondrous cause to rouse her jealousy, and then her rage exceeded all description. If I but turned my head, it was to gaze upon a female; if a girl at all decent in appearance enquired the way to any place or person, it was a planned thing; if a single word escaped me, that word conveyed an appointment; and if by chance; I met a woman of my former acquaintance and spoke but barely civil, it would afford the source of discord for a fortnight at least.

At length my patience was entirely exhausted and I determined to embrace the earliest opportunity to break the trammels that confined me and once again be free.

But this was easier resolved upon than executed; for, like my shadow, she eternally pursued me; aye, even when necessity compelled me to certain necessary duties which daily called me to a small retreat at the extremity of the garden; on my return I never failed to find her, sentinel-like, posted at the door — for I should have observed before that on my mother’s demise I had had my furniture, etc., removed to the widow’s house and entirely resided with her.

One happy morning — and blessed for ever be that day! — the breakfast equipage was on the table, the toast prepared, and I was sitting at the table not dreaming of the happiness in store for me, when I was compelled to answer a call which king and beggars equally obey. On my return — can I believe my eyes! — the doors were unguarded — the road to freedom lies before me! The thought, the deed, was but a moment’s work. Swift as an arrow’s flight I gained the street; and, coatless as I was, — heeding not the flaky snow that was fast falling around me — I ceased not running till I had reached the house of an old companion and schoolfellow, situated near three miles from the now hated object whose pursuit I dreaded.

It would be tedious were I to relate the various times I changed my lodgings during the short space of six weeks, or the apparently wonderful manner in which she never failed to discover my abode (which I afterwards found was owing to the treachery of a pretended friend); I shall therefore content myself with stating the means by which I eventually escaped her persecution.

I had taken a single apartment in the house of a fishmonger in an obscure part of the town, where I had not resided many days before I observed that his daughter — a pretty girl of sixteen, with flaxen hair and melting soft blue eyes — seemed studiously and at every opportunity to-throw herself in my way. At first I was induced to impute this to the curiosity natural to young females; but her attentions became too pointed to be mistaken; yet I took no advantage of the discovery, her youthful appearance having induced me to consider her as a mere child; but she was not of a temperament to suffer me long to linger under this delusion.

One night, about half-past seven, I had locked myself in my room, as was my constant custom, to prevent myself from being annoyed by the sudden intrusion of the lady I had so recently quitted — for she had as usual found my-hiding place, and had only on the day previous left me on a promise that I would meet her at the end of two days in order to make arrangements for our reunion — an appointment I candidly confess I never meant to keep. As I before stated, I had locked myself in and was engaged in the study of a piece of music in which I was appointed to take a part on the ensuing evening, when I was suddenly startled at hearing a gentle tap at the door. Experience having made me cautious I eagerly enquired, “Who’s there?”

A soft tremulous voice replied, “It’s me. Have you gone to bed?”

Convinced that it was not the object of my hate, I instantly unlocked the door; and there — blushing like a rose — stood my host’s fair daughter! She entered, and without apology accepted the chair I offered her. I must confess I felt myself embarrassed and at a loss in what manner to begin the conversation; for I had then for the first time observed a most delightful bosom that heaved tumultuously, as though impelled by no common agitation. I cast a look of enquiry on my fair visitor; her eyes met mine; she smiled; her cheeks assumed a scarlet hue; she seemed confused — held down her head and sighed. Momentary as was this transient glance, it was sufficient to convince me that her beauteous eyes were beaming with soft desires. I drew near her, and as I took her hand and gently pressed it in my own, I expressed in flattering accents the pleasure I derived from such an unexpected condescension. She begged I would pardon her the liberty she had taken, as curiosity was the only motive; from the moment she first beheld me, after I became an inmate of her father’s house, she felt persuaded we had met before, although at a distant period; and as our mutual diffidence each moment became less, she soon convinced me that we had received the rudiments of education at the same school. After some trifling conversation, from which I ascertained that her parents were in bed, and of course believed her in her chamber, she rose to take her leave; but now, emboldened by our increasing familiarity, and espying a thousand charms that till this moment had escaped my notice, I passed my arm round her taper waist and begged the favor of a parting kiss.

She smiled consent; I pressed my lips to hers with transport and for some moments held her in my arms and pressed her to my bosom, covering her lips and neck with my fervent kisses. She faintly strove to break from my embrace, and whispered, “Oh, pray let me go! I did not think — My father will be out by break of day; some other time we’ll meet again.”

“Fear nothing, lovely girl! Exhausted by his daily toil, your father sleeps securely. Let us not slight the favourable hour kind fortune now affords us — nay, fear me not, worlds should not tempt me to do you an injury. Thus to enfold you in my fond embrace — thus to exchange sweet kisses of pure affection, is all I ask.”

Assured by these words, she seated herself upon my knee, and as the excitement of the moment rendered me more eloquent, her scruples grew gradually weaker; until at last they vanished altogether and gave place to an outburst of erotic frenzy which was vastly more to my liking. I was now to learn that my charmer had a fair knowledge of the French language, and having lately read several books in which the amorous exploits of that gay people were described in detail, she was all for putting into practice some of their quaint and bizarre pastimes.

Amongst these I found was the substitution of the female mouth as a receptacle for the male organ, and as I was assured that this was productive of very acute pleasure to the owner of the instrument in question, I graciously acceded to the pretty child’s petition that I would consent to be operated upon in the manner indicated.

Her delight at my complaisance was boundless, and in an instant she was upon her knees before me, and seizing my now distended member in her hand pushed it far into her mouth, where it was treated to a most mighty pleasant suction of her lips and tongue. As the crisis approached I cried to her to withdraw, but it appeared that this was not in accordance with the teaching of her Gallic masters, since, so far from complying, she passed her naked arms behind my buttocks and drew me still closer to her face until such time as love’s sources were unloosed and I had poured forth a copious and protracted libation upon her leaping tongue.

Far be it from so truthful a chronicler as myself to deny that the sensations produced by the contact of this fresh young mouth were both novel and acute, and I was disposed to accord a certain measure of thanks to my little lady’s Parisian preceptors.

As, with all my failings, vanity was one I never cherished, I wish not to imply that I possessed her virgin love; on the contrary, from the experienced manner in which she conducted herself I should not scruple to affirm that although her father in his avocation of fishmonger might frequently have a maid at his disposal in the way of business, anything bearing that appellation in any other part of his house or family was a decided rarity. Such being the case, it is needless to say that our innocent pastime was frequently repeated during the short time I remained at her father’s house.

Finding that the caress above described was a source of genuine pleasure to the lustful maiden, I unselfishly permitted its repetition, whilst at her urgent solicitation I learnt to reciprocate her kiss in kind, and soon found that my tongue could take pleasure in creeping between other lips besides those which smiled above her dimpled chin.

Let not the shocked reader presuppose that the more customary form of sexual intercourse was neglected. On the contrary, additional zest was given to the act of coition by the French preliminary referred to, at the close of which this sixteen-year old Messalina would throw herself naked upon my bed, and clasping my instrument in her pretty fingers and drawing it eagerly between her thighs, would lock her finely developed legs over my back, pass her naked arms around my neck, and passionately respond to my well-directed efforts to penetrate her womb.

So much youth, beauty, and erotic distinction combined could not fail of their effect upon my own somewhat sanguine temperament, and it is more than likely that an offer of marriage might have followed had it not been for the happy intervention of the incident now to be set forth.

On returning home one afternoon, I found my little charmer in tears, and on enquiring the cause of her grief, she informed me that her mother had received a letter in an unknown hand desiring her to watch her daughter closely as an amour had long been carried on between her and the singer then lodging in her house. The poor girl upbraided me bitterly for a fault of which I was perfectly innocent — having a confidant in what should have been confined to ourselves. I soon convinced her of the wrong she had done me in entertaining such an opinion.

Having dried her tears, she added that her mother would soon be home, as she was impatient to see me on the subject of the letter.

A loud knocking at the door warned us to separate, as it announced her mother’s return; and I was shortly after summoned to the parlour.

I no sooner entered the room than, with a countenance compared to which that of an enraged lioness would have appeared perfectly mild, she placed the letter in my hand, asking me how I dared defame the character of her innocent child? I was extremely glad to find that her confidence in her daughter was still unshaken, as I felt quite assured that I could convince her of my sincerity; and I at once declared the charge to be a foul calumny, invented by some secret enemy to her, her daughter, or myself.

On carefully examining the writing, I easily discovered the author, notwithstanding the hand was disguised — the widow had as usual discovered my abode, and, as she afterwards acknowledged to one of my friends, had taken advantage of a street door being left open to enter the house; gently ascending the stairs, she had, by means of a confounded keyhole, seen quite enough to satisfy her of the nature of the lesson I was then giving my fair pupil. Knowing from the violence of my temper that she would gain nothing by alarming me at such a moment, she left the house unperceived as she had entered it; and, prompted by malice, jealousy, and revenge, prepared the letter before alluded to, hoping that I should suffer more from the vengeance of an injured father than by any other plan she could invent; nay more, by this course she anticipated the double gratification of entailing endless misery on the poor girl; in which, but for the confidence the parents felt in her virtue, she might fatally have succeeded.

In order to satisfy them fully, I related a part of my adventures with the widow; and by reminding them of what a violent woman, inflamed by jealousy, is capable, I succeeded for a time in removing all their doubts.

But, fancying that they still regarded me with suspicion, I thought it prudent to remove from my lodgings; and in a few months after I had the satisfaction to hear that they had married their daughter much above their expectations.

I now resided with a most respectable family, to whom my own parents had been known, where I pursued my studies for some time without interruption; but I was not long to enjoy this tranquil life — my evil genius, in the widow’s form, eternally pursuing me.

One evening I left home to attend a rehearsal. I had not proceeded more than fifty yards when suddenly I found my progress arrested by a pair of arms from behind me clasping my waist! I was about to speak, but my breath was stopped by a multitude of burning kisses. Thus, having neither power to move or speak, I pushed the party off and turned my eyes around, when they instantly encountered the amorous glances of — the devil! — that perpetual plague, the widow! She wept, entreated, begged I would accompany her home, only to hear her; she had something much to my advantage to communicate to me. In vain I remonstrated, threatened, and pleaded the urgency of my engagements; I could not shake her off; and now, to add to my confusion, our animated conversation had arrested the attention of the passers-by. I found myself surrounded by a crowd of gazers. Ready to sink through the earth with shame in order to escape — though bursting with rage, indignation, and hatred — I seized my tormentor’s arm and broke through the crowd, nor spoke one word or halted till we reached her house at Chelsea.

Here, as I suspected, the whole artillery of tears, protestations, groans, etc., were brought in force against me. She threw her arms around my neck; she continued to press warm kisses on my reluctant lips, and clasped me to her bosom — which was really beautiful and in the struggle had escaped its covering. Pity the weakness of human nature when I confess that every moment my efforts to escape became more feeble; a pleasurable sensation, in spite of my previous resolution, came stealing o’er my senses. I actually returned her kiss. How can I describe the effect this had upon the widow! Tears of pleasure gushed from her eyes; she drew me towards her, and — I forgot her persecutions — I only remember that a lovely woman was before me-longing, loving, tempting — I clasped her in my arms, and then and there administered to her a most profound and sagacious futtering. A natural sense of justice compels me to admit that the widow was a highly responsive and satisfactory bedfellow, and I even found it in my heart to envy the late lamented — who having married her when she was only fifteen was presumably (though by no means certainly!) the first to convey his dart in the (then) tender and closely clinging vagina. Nevertheless, when I afterwards reflected on the dilemma in which I had again involved myself, I cursed my weakness a thousand times; and as I gazed upon her sleeping form all my disgust returned with threefold violence.

The morning now began to dawn; it was in the month of August; I gently left the bed and hurried on my clothes; with some difficulty I reached the street-door. Already I imagined I had regained my liberty but — oh! curse on her precaution! — it was locked, and the key was missing! I was returning in despair to the bedroom when I perceived the parlour door had not been fastened; it was a momentary impulse; I eagerly entered, threw up the sash, the shutter-fastening yielded to my touch, I leaped into the garden, gained the high road, and arrived at my lodgings as the family were sitting down to breakfast; to them I related the incident of my meeting with the widow (concealing of course my unjustifiable weakness), and implored my friend should she make enquiry for me in the course of the day that he would say I had left his house on the previous evening and had not yet returned.

I had scarcely obtained this promise from him when she knocked at the door. My friend had much difficulty in persuading her to depart. She begged with tears that he would allow her to wait till I returned; when he refused, her conduct became so very outrageous that he was compelled to thrust her into the street and close the door against her.

For upwards of a fortnight we were annoyed by her daily visits; and as my friend continued to deny me, her rage at length became ungovernable. Frequently would the violence of her language draw a crowd round the house, to whom she would detail the story of her wrongs, and, as may be imagined, did not always keep within the boundaries of truth. Although such conduct was particularly unpleasant, it ultimately became the means of ridding me for ever from my tormentor.

One evening, after vainly endeavouring to see me, she so far forgot herself as to publicly insinuate to the listening crowd that the wife and daughter of my friend were little better than prostitutes, and that I was encouraged there for the vilest purposes. The neighbours, indignant at hearing a most respectable family thus vilified, and determined to put an end to such disgusting conduct, prevailed on my friend to send for an officer and place her in his custody.

During the time the servant was gone in quest of a constable, the memory of the pleasant hours I had formerly spent in the widow’s society made me extremely unwilling to see her placed in durance vile; yet perfectly convinced that something must be done to curb the fury of her dangerous tongue, I imparted a plan to my friend to which, notwithstanding the abuse she had so unjustly lavished on his family, he instantly assented. Accordingly, on the arrival of the officer, she was brought into the house, where, in the presence of myself, my friend, the officer, and all the family, it was intimated to her that she was then in custody on a charge of defamation and for creating a disturbance in the street. On finding herself in this unexpected difficulty — die fears of being conveyed to a watch-house for the night, together with the recollection of her children at home — excited such terror in her mind that she fell upon her knees, and with tears in her eyes earnestly implored forgiveness. She acknowledged the charges against my friend and his family were totally unfounded, and uttered in a moment of extreme passion that she had no recollection of having used the disgraceful language now imputed to her.

This was what I expected — die very moment I had waited for. My friend immediately assisted her to rise and offered to forego all further proceedings against her, to dismiss the officer, and allow her to depart, upon her solemn promise never to annoy me more; he at the same time pointed out to her the folly of her late behaviour, which was much more calculated to create disgust than to recall the fleeting affections of a wandering lover. She acknowledged the justness of his reasoning and gave the required promise, only begging that we might part on friendly terms. She advanced towards me and offered her hand for a parting shake. I gave it. My friend escorted her to the door, and thus ended my amour with the fair widow of Chelsea.

I felt great pleasure at this amicable arrangement of a very unpleasant affair and determined to avoid in future anything that might lead me into a similar situation; in fact I absolutely rejected several overtures which might have led me into connections of an interesting nature. I became unusually dull, and would not positively understand the advances of several fair friends; so much did I prize the liberty I now enjoyed, compared with the annoyances to which I had so long been subjected.

My engagements rendering it necessary that I should remove nearer to the patent theatres, I secured myself comfortable lodgings not a mile from Covent Garden, which played the very devil with my virtuous resolution; for it happened that the very next room to mine was occupied as a sleeping room by a young couple newly married; and, the partition being rather slight, I was enabled without difficulty to overhear each night the most endearing language, which was occasionally followed by sounds, to translate the meaning of which would drive sleep from my eyes for hours together. The voice of the female was soft and musical! How did I long to get a sight of her! Every plan I tried to obtain this object failed; and every time my plans failed my imagination painted her still more beautiful. In my mind’s eye she was a very Venus.

I had resided here for near two months when, returning from a concert about three o’clock one morning I was proceeding up stairs to bed as usual, when my landlord, stepping from the parlour, begged I would walk in, as he wished to speak a few words with me.

This being the first time we had ever spoken together — I having taken my apartments of the landlady, and the late hours I was compelled to keep having prevented our meeting since — I was of course rather surprised at the unexpected request; however, I immediately followed him into the parlour. On the table were bottles containing rum, brandy, a decanter of water, glasses, etc. A man, having the appearance of a respectable mechanic, of harsh features and low stature, sat in a disconsolate posture, supporting his head upon his hand; he appeared absorbed in deep reflection, which my entrance did not in the least disturb, until my host begged to introduce Mr. E — . He instantly rose up, and handed me a chair, and in a few moments I found that my new acquaintance was my old but unknown friend of the best side of the partition. He was then in momentary expectation of being hailed a father; and this accounted for the invitation I had so unexpectedly received.

We partook of several glasses of brandy and water together, and in less than an hour my fellow lodger was congratulated by the communicative nurse on his becoming the happy father of a beautiful daughter, declaring at the same time that the mother was doing remarkably well.

I must confess that during the time I was in company with my new acquaintance I could not help regarding him with a kind of dislike — a secret feeling of envy that a man so destitute of personal attractions should possess so lovely a woman — as I could not help imagining his wife to be.

For the first time in my life I must admit that I indulged in a feeling of vanity; and fancied that, could I but gain an introduction and have an opportunity of declaring my sentiments to her, I should have but little to fear from so contemptible a rival; and although in my heart I despised the man, I determined to cultivate his acquaintance — to bear with his insipid conversation in order at a future time to enjoy the sprightly society of his (to my imagining) fascinating wife.

Fortunately for me, his business called him away from morning till night; Sunday therefore was the only day on which I had to undergo the mortification of his company. But I endured my fate with the most heroic fortitude; the anticipation of the sweet reward I promised myself upheld me and enabled me to gild my features with a show of pleasure foreign to my heart.

On week days I omitted nothing that might induce her to think favorably of me, and as women are generally partial to music I had my piano removed into my bed-chamber, from whence I well knew every note I played or sung could be heard most distinctly by her. Under this impression I would sit at home for hours, apparently employed in close professional practice but in reality singing the most voluptuous songs I could select from the poetry of Moore, Byron, etc., which I adapted to pathetic and love-inspiring melodies; nor was it long before I was rewarded for my labors by the glad discovery that I was listened to with pleasure by the as yet sweet enchantress of my soul. I have frequently, after playing a short prelude in order to arrest her attention, heard her exclaim, in an audible whisper to the nurse, “Hush! he’ll sing presently.” I even once suspected that, prompted by curiosity, that bane of lovely woman, she was endeavouring to steal a glance at me by means of a convenient keyhole, when, on a sultry summer’s day, she thought me sleeping; and I frequently chuckled with delight as I overheard her sweet voice speaking to her female visitors in terms of admiration of my vocal talent.

Every day my impatient longing to behold her became more difficult to control; and one morning having occasion to take out the movement of my instrument, I determined, under pretence of borrowing a screwdriver, to tap at her door and thus gratify my long indulged desire.

I did so. With panting heart I watched the opening door; and in a moment after, she stood before me! I must here confess that the first feeling I experienced was one of disappointment, for she certainly fell very short of the Venus my fond imagination had so frequently painted; but still, at every stolen glance, I discovered some new charm. She had indeed that peculiar cast of countenance which improves upon acquaintance; her stature was rather below the middle size, her complexion dark, and her features upon the whole remarkably pleasing, being lit by a pair of eyes of dazzling brilliance; never shall I forget their peculiar expression; they seemed at one glance to read the very soul. Her hair was of a glossy jet black and shaded her forehead in natural curls; while her bosom, plump and finely formed, seemed by its gentle heavings to invite the pressure of a lover’s gentle touch.

In the most affable manner she complied with my request, and I retired to my own apartment — not to my instrument, but to ponder on the charms of this, if not strictly handsome, very fascinating creature.

 

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