Phileas Fogg - A Memoir Pt. 04byParisWaterman©
Several months passed quickly and I had all but forgotten the Mooring sisters. Still I had not had any but the slightest intimacies with a female of any age since that last afternoon of carnal wantonness. I concerned myself with getting my home in order, going to Sotheby's on a weekly basis and picking up excellent pieces, both of art and furniture and appliances. Finally, with the house fully furnished and both a housekeeper and servant hired, I decided it was time to look into business matters and met with my solicitor and financial advisor, Mr. Prescott T. Wainwright. After careful consideration we agreed it would be best to divest the jewelry left to me by the late Dorian Gray and invest the proceeds with 33% going to Lloyds of London; 33% to the Royal Bank of England and use the remaining 33% to dabble in various investments in the shipping industry. The last being a much higher risk to my money than the former two, but with the risk there was also the reward and that promised to triple my investments if successful. Actually, over the next few years I break even in the shipping industry but managed to protect the remainder of my assets in the banking and insurance companies. However, I will have more to say on this later on.
At any rate, Wainwright and I decided to celebrate and went off to hail a Hackney cab. We were two neophytes in this regard, as I , while now an official resident of London, was not really acquainted with this great city, having spent most of my time after being discharged from the military in and around Oxford University, about an hour's train ride to London. Now you would do well to recall that about this time the hackney cabs were being replaced, albeit gradually, as a means of moving about this great city.
I recall reading an article in the Chronicle of a traffic count conducted in two sites, Cheapside and London Bridge that showed a thousand vehicles an hour passing through these areas during the day. The only reason I mention this is that this amount of horse drawn traffic produced an incredible amount of manure which had to be removed from the streets. Thus there were intermittent delays on our supposedly short journey as crews shoveled the manure off the street and we waited impatiently for them to be done.
It was one such delay that Mr. Wainwright spied a policeman and hailed him over to our cab. It seemed this was Wainwright's brother-in-law, an officer named Quigley, just coming off duty and going off on the town as it was Friday night. Not wanting to be rude, I invited him to join us and he proved to be a good companion and guide for the duration of the evening.
"Are you not familiar with London, Mr. Fogg?" He asked, having summed me up in his mind as an outsider.
"I am not, I'm afraid, Officer Quigley.
"Well then, please permit me to inform you of a few things as we ride along."
"I would be predisposed to hear anything you have to say about this city, Office Quigley."
"Good, good," he said, rubbing his large hands together as though warming up to tell a long story.
"We're now passing what was once called Smithfield's Live Cattle Market. They moved out of the city to slaughterhouses in Islington two years ago. At its peak there might be six hundred newly slaughtered oxen hanging up, and seven hundred sheep."
"That is a considerable amount of meat, Officer Quigley," I said imagining in my mind how it must have looked.
"Aye," he said, "But the unforgettable memory . . . and I cannot get this out of my head, I'm reminded of it each time I pass by."
"And what might that be, Sir?" I inquired.
"The children . . . I have none myself, though God knows we keep trying, But the children of this neighborhood inured to sights of brutality from their birth, trotting along the alleys, mingled with troops of horribly busy pigs, up to their ankles in blood. Horrible sight, yes, but it did them some good I suppose, in that it made the young rascals a very hardy breed.
"Up to their ankles, you say?" I asked, my mind reeling at the thought of running through ankle deep blood, 'Mud, yes, but blood?'
"That very same blood, Mr. Fogg, oh, I've seen it with my own eyes many times doing my duty. It flowed into the imperfect sewers of this woefully overgrown city; and with all the other rot going down there as well rising up at night as poisonous gas."
I interrupted him to say," Surely you jest, man. I mean poisonous gases? Here in London?"
"I do not jest, Mr. Fogg. There's little talk about it in Parliament or other governmental offices, but I've had to trot out here many a night and comfort the survivors, if any, of a family . . . usually the children who most readily absorb the noxious waste and die, choking in their vomit."
"Good God, man!" I said incredulous that such incidents were occurring in this city without my having heard a peep of it.
"That's not the end of it Mr. Fogg. For the filthy waste, once in our sewers, wends its way into the Thames and mixes with the very water that you and I drink."
It was as if a bell were clanging in my head. For I had been disturbed about the outbreak of cholera as well as the Great Stink of 1858 -- a stink so blatantly foul coming out of the Thames that Parliament itself was compelled to recess.
"Has either of you gentlemen seen this evening's Times?" Officer Quigley asked.
We had not. He went on without waiting for a response from either of us.
"Interesting article on the third page. The third page, mind you," he said with obvious distain. "A Doctor John Snow appears to have proven that all the victims in a Soho area cholera outbreak were drawing their water . . . Thames water, mind you . . . from the same Broad Street pump."
"Egad!" The word burst from Prescott T. Wainwright's lips, the first word or words he'd spoken since introducing his brother-in-law to me. "So there must be a direct link between the two!" He said, seemingly shocked.
"Has Parliament responded to this story as yet?" I inquired.
"I think not," Quigley answered quickly. Then followed with, "But I expect they shall." Quigley cleared his throat and spat out of the cab into the muddy street. "Probably appoint someone to study the matter further and when the evidence becomes irrefutable; they'll pass a law that will either clean the Thames or stop us from drinking it."
"Do you suppose they might build a canal and supply London with clean, fresh water from a more pristine part of England?" Wainwright asked, pondering aloud.
"And where might that place be?" Quigley asked with a sarcastic grin. "People throw their fecal matter and all sorts of waste in the rivers and streams all over the Empire. Perhaps there is an isolated town somewhere, but I hardly think they'd allow their water to be sent to London. Not without a merry fight."
I had to agree with him, and after a moment, Wainwright admitted as much himself. We were silent for the next few minutes and then I saw we were fast approaching several large, well lighted buildings off in the distance.
"Now," said Officer Quigley, "I would advise you to make the Casino your choice in the Holborn, afore you back home, sir; and then you may say you've seen the best of the bad places of London. The Casino is open till one o'clock to-night, I think, and we'll just be in time for the best dance."
Our cab dashed up Coventry Street, through Cranbourne Street, into Long Acre, and up Drury Lane, past the old theatre of that name, and in a few minutes we descended in the wide, open space of the Holborn, before the entrance of the Casino, the fashionable dance-house of London.
The street was lined with cabs, and policemen were thick in the vicinity of the entrance, ordering the men and women just coming out to pass on, and keep the street clear, a duty which gained for them a great deal of abuse from the intoxicated women, who did not want to pass on by any means.
We three entered the Casino through a gaudy, gilded vestibule and down a descent of four or five steps to a spacious marble floor, which was covered with dancers. The whole interior was gilded, gold leaf and white predominating above all other colors.
The band, as at the other places of evil resort, was placed in the farthest end gallery, and was an excellent one. The leader wore white kids and the musicians white vests, and the crash of the instruments was almost deafening, filling the large space with a wild and not unpleasing harmony. Attendants in evening dress were on the floor, making up sets and soliciting the habitués of the place to dance with the female partners, which were easily found for them.
A high balcony ran all round the hall, which was some 100 feet by 75 in dimension, and in the corners of the saloon, up and down stairs, were cafés and refreshment bars, which were crowded within customers.
Officer Quigley nodded sagaciously to several other officers and constables; then announced, "The entrance to this place is only one shilling, and the class of visitors of a superior kind to those who go to any other dance-house in London."
I should mention if I have not already done so, that neither Wainwright nor I had ever been to the Casino, or any other establishment of its kind. And so we were somewhat taken aback by the gaudiness of it all.
The saloon was really a magnificent one, rich and tasteful in its decoration, and the women were well and neatly dressed, and very quiet and well-behaved in their manner. Every woman wore nice gloves, high-heeled boots, and all of them had the lace frill or ruff now prevalent in London around their necks. They also wore charms and lockets and gold watches, and every one was attended by a cavalier. The men were smoking cigars and flirting, and a number of foreigners were present and danced incessantly, just as they would at the Mabille or any Continental garden.
In fact, I was to learn that this was the only place in London, with the exception of Cremorne Gardens, that in any way approached the mad gaiety of the Mabille, the wildest dance hall of all Paris. Still, there is a certain English decorum observed here, and any girl who would get drunk or lift her skirts too high would be expelled instantly by the master of ceremonies, assisted by the policemen who are to be found scattered all over the place. Some of the girls will go up and ask for partners to dance with them, and then, if the latter wish to give them liquor, well and good, but they will not solicit it, because these women affect the fashionable lady as much as their limited resources will allow.
Officer Quigley explained that the women were of the demi-monde persuasion; either the mistresses of men of leisure, or higher class prostitutes and some actresses. When the season is at its height a great number of men about town may be seen here, as spectators, who come from the clubs or the Houses of Parliament, bored by the ennui of the reading rooms at one place, or the prosy speeches of members of the other.
I looked on wide-eyed as some of the men danced with cigars in their mouths, whirling around in such a wild manner as to cause collisions with the other couples. I witnessed two girls waltzing; and two men who had apparently sat too long at the dinner-table getting up together to dance a "stag dance." I was quick to learn this practice was frowned upon by the master of ceremonies, as the dancing of a pair of male bipeds was not calculated to help the business of the place, and it was instantly suppressed, amid cheers and laughter.
Some twenty minutes later, I made the acquaintance of a young lady named Dolly, perhaps eighteen or nineteen, with flaming red hair, a delicate complexion and unusually white teeth; wearing what I knew to be the colourful, gaudy dress of a prostitute. That she was a prostitute I had no doubt. All the women present were prostitutes. For the most part they were all pretty and expensively dressed, unaccompanied by the pallor of ill-health. However, Officer Quigley quietly informed us that their looks could be deceiving in that their very appearance was doubtless due to the artistic manner of the make-up by powder and cosmetics, on the employment of which extreme care is bestowed.
I would soon learn that few of these women could write a decent letter, though some might be able to play a little on the piano, or to sing a simple song.
Their behavior was usually quiet and very little solicitation was observable. It seemed the custom held that they maintain all the outward proprieties of demeanor and gesture; for should any woman misconduct herself, she would be pointed out to the door-keepers with instructions not to admit her again to the rooms. No punishment could be heavier, no sentence more rigorously carried out.
Quigley laughed telling us how such a woman will attempt in vain by disguise to avoid recognition, or by bribes to soften the watchful janitor. Her efforts will be met with some such rebuke as this: 'It's no use trying it on, Miss Polly; the gov'nor says you are not to go in, and, of course, you can't!' Once shunned, her only chance of obtaining remission of the sentence is to induce some friend to plead with the proprietor on her behalf, who may, but does not always, readmit her after an exile of three months, and on her promising to behave herself in the strictest manner for the future.
As I chatted up Dolly, my first impression was that she was some gentlemen's mistress. But Dolly was reasonably honest and forthright, saying, "Oh, no, Mr. Fogg, oh, I may have a 'gentleman friend' or two I see on the regular, yer know, but what they gives me ain't that much. It helps 'o course, but I needs to meet nice gentlemen like yourself," and she managed to rub her hip against my thigh for emphasis, "to see me through, so's I eat proper, yer know?"
Since I had not had a good fuck with the Mooring sisters in a while, my prick was at full mast and she damn well knew of it, brushing against it from time to time and giving me this coquettish smile each and every time. Dolly spoke of many things, but always whether up front, or in the background, the subject of money was foremost the main topic.
I also knew that the gentleman, or gentlemen who paid Dolly on a regular basis, would not object if I were to occupy her of an evening. Further, the very fact of her spending this time with me meant her gentlemen were probably not in attendance that evening.
Dolly was not at all shy in requesting drinks and I had no reason to object as they were not all that expensive in the first place.
Having had several scotches myself, I tested Dolly by bluntly asking her how much she charged for her services.
She did not bat an eye, responding, "Just three sovereigns, Ducky, that's all. A bargain I am, you'll see," and promptly quaffed her 'phiz' and beckoned to the bartender for another. "There is one thing tho," she said, pursing her lips which appeared swollen as with desire, but was merely a device such women used to hold a man's attention.
"What might that be?" I asked already grown heady with her closeness and perfume.
"I ain't leaving just yet. I want to dance some more, and drink some more, and laugh some more first."
I had to smile at her candor. "That's perfectly fine with me, but answer me this, will we be having a fine fuck later?"
Her responding laugh was shrill and loud, causing several heads to turn our way. I felt flustered and the fool for having asked the question.
But Dolly was apparently delighted with my question, and putting her mouth near my ear so that only I would hear her words, said, "I'll fuck yer brains out, Ducky. I'll lick your wee prick until it stands out like a ship's mast 'en then I'll take it in me hole and squeeze it 'til yer pop."
Thus she succeeded in heightening my ardor for her far beyond my wildest imaginings. Still I had the presence of mind to ask, "Which hole would that be, Dolly?"
Once again I had genuinely delighted her. She slapped my arm, so pleased was she with me. Again she whispered in my ear, "for you governor, any hole you want and we'll have at it twice for the same amount. I like you, Mr. Fogg. Really I do. You're a different breed you are."
Dolly paused, and to my eyes at that moment seemed overly calculating. I would learn this was not the case, but that it was her appearance when given to thinking hard about something.
"'En maybe, if yer like me . . . we might have an arrangement of sorts, yer know, Ducksie?"
"Dolly, would it be presumptuous of me to ask you to refrain from calling me Ducky, or Ducksie? I am certainly not flattered to hear such an obnoxious name, or endearment if that is what it is -- tendered to me. Mr. Fogg, or in moments or ardor, perhaps my Christian name, Phileas would suffice.
"Certainly, Phileas," she smiled gaily. "Phileas it is."
"Well then," said I, "shall we dance?"
And we danced, drank and made merry until closing time; which was midnight. And in all that time I saw neither hide nor hair of Officer Quigley or Mr. Wainwright. Both of whom I later learned had left with a pair of young ladies around ten o'clock.
At precisely ten minutes of twelve, the music struck up for the last gallop, and there was a rush for partners; the balconies, alcoves, luxurious seats and marble tables were suddenly deserted. I grabbed Dolly around the waist and joined in the wild hurly-burly confusion and uproar of men and women galloping and bounding and yelling to the right, and to the left. And as the last crash of the big drum beat on our ears, the passages and doorways were thronged with the dancers abandoning the Casino; every man crying for a cab to take himself and partner somewhere, perhaps they cared not where --- it was no matter; and in a matter of minutes as we waited for a cab or a carriage, the Casino's gaudy lights dimmed and we were suddenly clothed in darkness.
As I looked about for a carriage to covey Dolly home with me, I saw others also making their leave, beginning their search for further dissipation elsewhere. There were loose persons of both sexes congregated on the street outside, and as we began our carriage ride to Saville Row, policemen busied themselves seeing the last of the women out of the premises and away from the doorway; and then began their patrols, which lasted until daybreak.
I looked from the carriage as we passed by divans and night houses on Haymarket and several adjoining streets. Dolly chatted casually even as my fevered hand massaged her cunt under the protection of her chemise, acting as if nothing untoward were occurring. Then I realized that for Dolly it was a normal occurrence and accepted as such. So I rubbed away and tried to listen to her running one-sided conversation.
"These places here," she pointed, "ain't nothin' but small, ill-aired rooms with liquor and such available and the ladies 'ave no rules against certain things like back at the Casino. Oh, there's plenty of good fucking goin' on in each of 'em, Duc . . ."
Dolly caught herself, "I means Mr. Fogg." I said nothing, but gave her cunt a little squeeze.
"Oh, I like that," she said and giggled. "You've got a nice touch there Mr . . .do tell me yer given name again, sir?
"Phileas," I said.
"Phileas . . ." she repeated, drawing the name out longer then she should have, and I realized she was teasing me.
I had two fingers in her juicy cunt as the carriage arrived at Number 7 Saville Row. I truly believe that Dolly had come at least twice on the bumpy journey, for she had taken me in her mouth with a joyous propensity that had me close to spending . . . and I would have except that Dolly knew full well how close I was, and backed off sufficiently so that my erection gradually subsided a little. My prick was leaking an enormous amount of pre-spunk and Dolly matter-of-factly dabbed at it with her dainty pink tongue.