VOLUME 4 CHAPTER 7
A big maid-servant. • A peep up from below. • Home late, dusty and stupid. • Chastity suspected. • Consequences. • Dismissed. • My sympathy. • The soldier lover. • Going to supper. • At the Café de l’E*r**e. • In the cab returning. • Wet feet. • On the seat. • Mutual grasping and gropings.
I have forgotten to say that I had been again much better off, but by extravagance had to draw in, and now lived in a larger house, but kept only three servants. During the latter part of the time of my liaison with Mrs. Y***s***e we had for a month or so but one servant. A charwoman came to do rough work; but why this temporary arrangement took place need not be told.
She was a big country woman quite five feet ten high, and speaking with a strong provincial accent. When she was alone in the house I used to cross the streets to see her kneel, and clean the door-steps. She had such a big arm, and her bum looked so huge that I wondered how much was flesh, and how much petticoats. She cleaned the windows on the ground- floor, which in the house I then inhabited were got at by an iron balcony with open bars beneath. Seeing her cleaning them one day I went stealthily to the kitchen, and then into the area, and peeping cautiously up her petticoats, saw her legs to her knees. They were big and suited to her buttocks; but though the sight pleased me much, I never thought of having her, for I avoided women in my own house and neighbourhood. She was plain-faced, sleepy, and stupid-looking; the only thing about her nice, was bright rosy flesh. She looked solid all over. Her hair was a darkish chestnut colour, her eyes darkish, and one day she lifted a table as heavy as herself. There was not the slightest amorousness in her face or manner, and she dressed like a well-to-do country woman. Give her lots of nice, good, white underclothing; it was better than a sham outside, I heard she had said. She was about twenty-two years old, but she looked older.
About two months after she came (and just then when without other servants), on arriving home one Sunday night at about ten o’clock, I found she had been allowed to go out as usual, but had not returned. Another hour crept on. Savage, I thought of locking her out. About half-past eleven she returned. I let her in, and asked why she was so late. She looked dazed, muddled, had a very red face, muttered she was sorry, she had fallen down and hurt herself, and without waiting to answer me properly went downstairs. My wife went after her, and when she came up, told me she thought she was in drink, and that her dress and bon-net were covered with dust. “She had been up to some tricks with a man,” said she.
Next day I heard she had told as an excuse, that as she was walking along a lane up which she turned to piddle, a man laid hold of her, and had taken liberties with her; that in the scuffle she had fallen down, had screamed, tried to catch him, had failed, and a lot more to similar effect. One or two days later I was told the woman had been dismissed. That I quite expected, for it was the mistress’ custom to coax out the facts from poor devils in a kind way, and then to kick them out mercilessly; any suspicion of unchastity was enough for that. Middle-aged married women are always hard upon the young in matters of copulation.
“What is she going for? A few days ago she was so beautifully clean, strong, and serviceable that none were like her!” “Oh! she has got a sweetheart, and is up to no good with him I’m sure.” “How do you know?” “She told me so.” “It’s hard to dismiss on suspicion only, a poor girl who came up to us from the country.” “You always take the part of those creatures.” “I know nothing for or against her, nor you.” “She is no better than she ought to be. — I have noticed a soldier idling about here for some time past.” “As you like, — it’s your business — but she came to us with an excellent character.”
I pitied the woman, but more than that from the time I heard that a man had assaulted her, a slightly lecherous feeling had come over me towards her. I wondered what he had done, — had he felt her? — had he fucked her? — had she ever been fucked before, even if the man had recently done it to her? I began looking closely at her, getting in the way on some pretext or another, and always wondering if this and that had been done. I looked at the broad backside, so broad that a prick must look a trifle by the side of it. “Have the male balls banged up against it?” I thought. When I heard of her being turned adrift I thought I would just like to have her once or so, and that her leaving us gave me a chance. Curiosity was I believe at the bottom of my desire for her, — it was her huge fleshy form, and that spanking arse. Oh! to look at it naked, and feel it, if I did nothing more.
Finding the charwoman was not coming one day, and that the big servant would be a short time alone in the house, home I went; and on some pretext went down to the kitchen.
“So you are going to leave us.” “Yes sir.” “Why?” “I’m sure I don’t know, — Missus says I don’t suit, — yet only a few days ago she said I suited well.” Here she broke into tears. I spoke kindly to her, said she would get another place soon, — she must take care not to go up dark lanes again with a man, nor go home late and dirty. She could not help it, — it was no fault of hers. What liberties did he take with her? I asked. The woman coloured up, and turning her head away, said he did what was very improper. “Did he put his hands up your petticoats?” “What was very improper,” she repeated. “But how did you get so dirty?” They struggled, and she slipped. “I wish I’d been him, — I’m sure when he felt, he got his hand close up, — I’d give a sovereign to have mine there.” That remark threw her into a distressing state of confusion.
I talked on decently, alluding to what I thought had taken place, and wishing I had been the man; but got nothing from her excepting that the man had taken liberties with her, — yes most improper liberties.
I told her I was sorry she was going, and thought she was hardly used, but I could not help it, — how was she off for money?
Very badly off, — she had come straight from the country to better herself, and had bought nice, good, underlinen, knowing she was coming to a gentleman’s house, and now before she could turn herself round she was sent off. She had had to pay for each coach to London, and when she had her wages, and paid for a cab to lodgings, she would not have twenty shillings left. What was she to do if she could not get another place? Here the big woman blubbered, left off cleaning, sat down on a chair, and hid her face.
“Don’t cry, you’re used badly, — I’ll give you a little money until you get a place, — it won’t be long.” “You’re a good kind master,” said she, “everyone says so, — but Missus is a beast, she ain’t no good to any one, — I don’t wonder you are out so much, and don’t sleep with her.” I gave a kiss and a cuddle. “What lovely limbs you have, — how firm your flesh is, — you are delicious, — I should like to sleep with you, — come into the lane with me, and tell me when you are going to piddle again, and let me take a liberty.”
“Who told you I went up the lane?” “Your mistress,” and then I left, telling her on no account to let it be known that I had been home.
After this I heard that she had said it was a soldier. Now I knew that a soldier who took liberties with a woman, took no little ones, and generally got all he tried for; so made up my mind that she had been fucked on the night she came home late.
A day or two after I was surprised with the following. “I’ve got another servant, — she will come the day after to-morrow, so I mean to send Sarah away at once, — of course she will be paid her month’s wages, but I shall get rid of her, for I am sure she is an unchaste woman.” “Poor devil! — it’s enough to make her unchaste, — but it’s your business.” “Are you going out to-night?” “Why?” “Because if you are I’m going round to my sister’s.” “I am.” — and off I went after dinner; but waited in a cab not far from the end of the street, watching to see if she really did go out. She did, and directly I spied her I drew myself back, and told cabby to follow her to the sister’s house. Then I drove back part of the way, and went home.
“So you are going?” said I to the servant. “Yes, I’m turned out, sir.” “A soldier and you went up a dark lane, — what a fool to tell your mistress.” “Ah! she has told you, — what a bad un, she sneaked it out of me, — but I’m not to blame, he is my sweetheart, and is going to marry me.” “Have you got lodgings?” “Yes sir, I’m going out to-morrow to see them, and I’ve written telling my sister (a servant also, and she has taken them.” “Wait for me when you go, and on no account say I’ve been home, — I mean to help you, — you are badly used, — what can I do for you?” “If you would help me to go to the Tower, — my young man’s name is ***,
he is a Grenadier, — I’ve written him, but he has not replied, and I want to know if he is there.” “I will wait for you to-morrow night outside, when you go to see the lodgings.” A kiss, a hug, and out of my house I went again, after having ascertained where she was going to, and the time she was to go out.
Next evening I waited outside her lodgings, she came in a cab with her box, and told me that her mistress had bundled her out. She had had nothing to eat since mid-day, and was sick and weary. “Make haste then, — arrange your things, and we will go and have something to eat, and you shall see your soldier tomorrow.” “God bless you, I do feel grateful sir,” said she.
In half an hour she came out. I did not know where better to go to, and knew that it was just the time when the place would be empty, so took her to the Cafe de l’Europe in the Haymarket. It was a long drive, but I wanted to be with her in the dark cab. She was wonderfully struck with the place, but I was ashamed of being seen with her. She was anxious to go home early, because she lodged with poor people who went to bed early. She had never tasted. champagne, so I gave her some. Oh! her delight as she quaffed it, and oh! mine as I saw her drink it, — it was just what I wanted. “A cock has been into her I am sure,” I thought, “so another can’t do her much harm, — if she’ll fuddle she’ll feel and be felt, or fuck, or frig, they always go together,” my old instructor in the ways of women used to say.
I arranged to take her the next day to the Tower; our talk naturally was about the affair. “He did it to you,” I said. She wouldn’t or didn’t see my meaning. “I could not help it if he did, or what he did, — he took improper liberties.” “He took them more than once, I’ll bet!” She did not like such joking, she remarked. All this was when we were going out to supper.
Going home in the cab I began to say a baudy word to her. “He felt your cunt,” said I, “did you feel his prick?” She bounced up and hit her bonnet against the top of the cab. “Oh! my! sir,” — but she kept on in her excitement, letting out bits of the history, saying at intervals, it was not her fault, — she was fuddled, —fuddled with beer and gin, — a little fuddled her. I saw that pretty clearly from the effect of the champagne; and unbuttoned so as to have my prick handy. It was a wet night, the bottom of the cab was wet straw. “My feet are quite wet,” said she. “Put them on the seat, my dear.” She did so; I felt them as if solicitous for her comfort, putting my hand higher than above her ankle, just to see if her ankles were wet also.
“Why your ankles are wet.” “Yes they are.” With a sudden push up went my hand between her thighs, — a yell and a struggle, but I had felt the split before she dislodged my fingers. She was stronger than me, but my hands roved about her great limbs, searching under her petticoats round her huge backside. “Oh! don’t, — you’re a beast.” “Oh! what a backside — what thighs! — what a lovely cunt I’m sure you have! — let me keep my hand just on your knee, and I swear I won’t put my hand higher.” To ensure my keeping my hand there, she held my wrist as well as a vice would have done. She had by sheer force got it down to there.
I pattered out all my lust, my desire to have her, incitements, and baudy compliments on her form. “Let me fuck you.” “You shan’t.” “You know what it means.” “I know what you mean.” “What harm could I do? — who would know?” And then the old, old trick. Taking her great fist in mine, I put my stiff prick into it. What a persuader! Though she kept up a show of struggling she did not get it away from that article instantly.
I suppose unless utterly distasteful to each other, that a man and woman cannot feel each other’s privates, without experiencing reciprocal baudy emotions. They get tender to each other. The woman always does, after she has got over the first shock to her modesty, and her temporary anger. If after a man has felt her, a thermometer could be applied to her split, I believe it would be found to have risen considerably in temperature. After struggling and kissing, trying to feel her quim, trying to keep my hand on her thighs, it ended in our having our mouths together and my hand being pinched between her two thighs, whilst the knuckles of one of her hands, with sham reluctance touched my doodle, just as the cab reached her dwelling, and there we parted. All the rest of our conversation was about her soldier, her being dismissed, and is not worth writing.