Beauty and the Beast Ch. 01byGweall©
Cormac stepped quickly down the winding stairs. His shoes clicked on the old stone floors and the small windows let in beams of light from the bright summer day outside. He scowled at the cheeriness of the day as he finally reached the bottom floor of his house, if you could call it that. He had inherited the mansion from a long line of family members, whom he had never even met.
It was three stories tall and looked like something out of a book of fairy tales. In a secluded spot, its beauty was not often seen by the general public. The outside of the home was decorated with flowers and plants, most of which Cormac had never even seen. His housekeeper took care of most everything, including the surrounding grounds. The first floor consisted of the opening hallway, with two winding stairs reaching up to the second floor. Also on the bottom floor was the kitchen, very large and modern in comparison to the medieval house, the dining room, and the living room. The living room was the largest room of the house and held the beautiful grand piano facing the large bay windows that were never open, and a magnificent fireplace. Up the winding stairs held the second floor, with bedrooms and bathrooms; and up the single winding staircase, the attic.
Cormac sat down at the old piano and began playing. The music drifted through the house as Richard walked down the stairs, watching him play for a while, before interrupting him. He cleared his throat loudly and Cormac stopped playing.
"Sir, it's getting late," Richard said. Cormac stayed silent for a moment.
"Go to bed, Richard. I'll be up awhile longer," Cormac instructed. Richard watched his slim back slouch over the keys of the piano as he wiped invisible pieces of dust off of them.
"Yes, sir," Richard turned and left the room, leaving Cormac behind.
It was midnight when Cormac heard the quiet voices. The house had long gone dark; but he prefered the dark. The voices were unmistakably children's voices. They were whispered and at one of the bay windows in the living room. Cormac sighed and walked over to the large windows. He opened them quickly and the whispering children gasped and turned to face him with eyes wide with fear. They stood in pure fright, unable to move or speak.
"Get out of here," Cormac growled. The children screamed and ran away from his scarred and pale face.
"Breakfast is ready, Sir," Richards cheery voice pierced his sleep-clogged mind and the bright morning sun broke through the barrier his eyelids created. He opened one eye to see Richard pulling back the blinds, letting in the bright morning sun. He turned his head away and growled.
"It's nothing I haven't seen before, Sir," Richard laughed and walked back downstairs. Cormac sighed before swinging out of bed and getting dressed.
He stepped into the dining room to see his breakfast laid out before his usual seat.
"You're too good to me, Richard," Cormac chuckled. Richard poked his head out of the kitchen doorway.
"With how much you pay me, I'm not good enough and I never will be," he smiled.
"You deserve every penny." Cormac sat and ate. He had inherited a large amount of money and would never have to work a day in his life, for that he was thankful. Years before he had hired Richard as a housekeeper, butler, groundskeeper, and more. Richard did an amazing job and was paid more than most doctors made. He was also allowed free room and food.
"Aren't you going to come join me?" Cormac called out as he ate his food.
"Afraid not, Sir. I have to go to the store. Speaking of which-"
"I'll fill out the check," Cormac said with a mouth full of bacon.
"Thank you, Sir," Richard shouted from inside the kitchen.
As soon as he was done eating he went to the piano and got to work.
David finished unpacking the last of the boxes and moved to get dinner ready. He prepared some steaks and potatoes with biscuits. He set the two plates down and called for his son.
"Aiden, dinner is ready!" he yelled out the door. He heard a few goodbyes and then his son appeared in the back door. He sat down and began eating.
"Make some new friends?" David asked as he chewed steak.
"Yeah, a couple. There's a monster here," Aiden said. David raised an eyebrow.
"A monster?" he tried not to laugh.
"Really there is! My friends saw it last night!" Aiden said.
"Uh huh... and where does this monster live?" David asked.
"Down the street, in that big house," David swallowed.
"If a monster has that much money, he has the right to be a monster," David laughed. Aiden rolled his eyes and continued eating.
A year ago David had divorced his wife, after telling her he was gay. He had always known it but when their parents set them up he had gotten her pregnant and they did what they thought was the responsible thing and got married. They had stayed married for four years until David couldn't stand being unhappy anymore. It had been a messy divorce but because she didn't have a job, and had a history of drug abuse, he had won custody of Aiden. Now five years old, Aiden was happy to live with his father and they had decided to start fresh by moving to a new town.
After dinner, the two got ready for bed and David took a shower. Once he stepped out of the hot shower and wiped the steam off the mirror he studied himself. He was six feet tall with well defined muscle. Not like a bodybuilder, but well enough so that when he flexed you could see the work he put into keeping his body fit. His brown hair was wet from his shower but was cut short and clean. His green eyes reflected the light and made them glow. He studied himself for a moment before nodding.
'I can still get a man,' he told himself. He dried himself off and looked down at his flaccid dick.
"We can still get a man," he muttered to his six inch soft cock. He chuckled before he crawled into bed.
Richard returned a short time later with groceries that he put away quickly. He moved on to clean the house and do the laundry. When he was finished with his duties around the house he went to find Cormac.
"Sir, any requests for dinner tonight?" Cormac sat in the living room at the piano, the room was dark and the curtains were drawn tight.
"No," Cormac said bitterly. Richard sighed and moved over to the windows to opened the curtains.
"Hey!" Cormac growled.
"You can't just sit here and pout all day. Go outside, do something. Everyday it's the same old thing," Richard said.
"Do I look like I could go do something in public?" Cormac asked. Richard stared at his scarred face.
"Yes, just don't let the people get to you," Richard said.
"Liar," Cormac growled. He stroked one of the longer scars on his face in thought.
"You have nearly a whole continent of land. Maybe don't go in public, but at least go outside," Richard pleaded.
"For once Richard, mind your own damn business and get back to work," Cormac huffed. Richard stared at him for a moment before leaving the room.
He stopped at the entrance and without turning said, "just because you have a messed up face doesn't mean you have a messed up life."
Cormac stared at the pearly white keys of the piano silently. He stood and went up to his room, without dinner. He quickly stripped and crawled into bed, falling asleep quickly.
"Come on baby, just give me a few bucks," Charlie begged.
"I told you, I don't feel comfortable giving you money," Cormac returned, as he wrote down another note.
"Why not, you have tons and all you do is sit here all day and write music!" Charlie stood and paced the room with boredom.
"Fine, what do you want to do?" Cormac put down the pen and paper, and closed the piano.
"I don't know lets go clubbing or something," Charlie suggested. Cormac grimaced.
"Alright fine." He stood to go find something to wear.
"Why do you always have that attitude?" Charlie growled as he walked away.
"I don't mean to, its just that I always have to do something that you want to do. And if I don't, I have to give you money so you can go do it without me. Why don't you ever want to do something that I like?"Cormac turned in the doorway to face him.
"Well what do you want to do?" Charlie crossed his arms.
"Lets play music, I can teach you how to play piano. Or we could go outside and have a picnic, or watch a movie, or something," Cormac shrugged.
"What are you forty? You're twenty for Christ's sake, you're supposed to be out partying and getting laid," Charlie made a dancing motion.
"Is that what you do when I don't want to go with you? Just go get laid by someone else?" Cormac glared.
"That's not what I meant," Charlie rolled his eyes.
"Whatever," Cormac turned. Charlie grabbed his arm and spun him around.
"Don't walk away from me like that," he growled.
"You're hurting me."
"Good." Cormac twisted out of his grip and rubbed his arm. "Now go get dressed, we're going out," Charlie grinned.
"I don't feel like going right now," Cormac sighed. He could feel a bruise forming on his upper arm.
"Why the hell not?" Charlie glared at him.
"I just don't, you know I don't like it when you get rough with me, Char," Cormac said. His head whipped around and the smack echoed in the room. It took a moment before he could feel the stinging pain in his cheek, his eyes filled with water and he looked up at Charlie.
"I don't give a shit what you like or don't like, now go get dressed. We're leaving in twenty minutes," Charlie growled and left the room. Cormac stood stunned, holding his cheek, which was throbbing with pain.
"Are you alright, sir?" Richard entered the room. Cormac nodded silently.
"Go get dressed, Sir. I'll get you an ice pack," Richard frowned.
"You're too good to me, Richard," Cormac whispered his usual thanks when Richard did something kind.
Cormac bolted up and felt Richard shaking him, he was in his night clothes and looked worried. He could feel himself sweating and tears fell from his eyes.
"You were having another nightmare, Sir," Richard said quietly. Cormac swallowed and looked at the clock, four a.m.
"Thank you, Richard. Go on back to bed, I'm going to stay up," Cormac said. Richard sighed and stared at him a moment longer, worried.
"Alright, Sir. Feel free to wake me if you need anything." Richard walked back to bed and Cormac rubbed his face, feeling each of the individual scars.
Getting up, he headed towards the master bathroom and stepped into a hot shower. He hissed as the water burned his skin but soon relaxed into the sensation of the hot water trickling down his back. He took his time and by the time he got out of the shower it was five thirty. He climbed down the stairs to see that Richard was already up and had a pot of coffee made. He grabbed a cup and sipped it.
"So I was thinking, Sir. Maybe we could go out today, there are a bunch of baby ducks swimming around the pond behind the mansion," Richard said casually.
"Not going to happen, Richard." Cormac turned away from him. He heard Richard sigh and pour himself another cup of coffee.
"Dad, can we go to the park today!" Aiden came bouncing into the living room as David sipped his coffee.
"Sure, it's Sunday, I don't have to work," David replied. Ever since he started his job at the construction site, he didn't have as much time to spend with Aiden as he would have liked. After breakfast and getting ready they headed out to the park. As they played catch they saw a very nice looking car go buy.
"That guy works for the monster," Aiden said.
"Huh?" David asked.
"The man in the car, he works for the monster," Aiden repeated. With the car window rolled down he could see the man in his white shirt and black vest, obviously a uniform.
'Damn, the guy is rich enough to have a butler?' he thought to himself.
"So who is this 'monster'?" David asked.
"He never comes out of his house, but he looks like a monster," Aiden said.
"Aiden, you know better than to judge people on the way they look," David scowled.
"But really dad, he's a monster!" Aiden said.
"Enough, I don't want you talking about someone like that just because they're different. Come on, we're going home," David instructed. As they passed the home that Aiden had been talking about, David looked up at the giant mansion. The fountain out front was probably more expensive than David's entire house.
Cormac finished up his music early and was about to crawl into bed when he heard the hushed whispers again. He sighed and rubbed his temples.
"Why can't these damn kids just leave me alone?" he grumbled to himself. He walked downstairs in the dark and heard them at the front door. He cursed and opened the door, they sat there much like they had a few nights back, wide eyed and jaw slacked.
"Get out of here!" he growled. They screamed and ran back down the steps and around the fountain. While running one of the young boys looked back, and in the process tripped over a rock. The other kids left him there and kept running. He began crying and even in the dark Cormac could see the blood.
"Ugh," he sighed. He looked around before stepping outside and down the steps. It had been so long since he had been outside the breeze felt unusual. He stepped closer to the kid who turned around onto his back and looked up at him with fear. His knee was badly cut from where he had fallen on the hard cement and the edge of his shorts were stained with blood.
"Come on, kid. Lets get you cleaned up," he sighed. The kid stared, jaw open and eyes filled with terror.
"Look, I'm not going to hurt you, kid. Just get up and I'll help you," Cormac said, frustrated. The kid slowly stood up, trying not to put weight on his leg. Cormac picked him up and carried him inside the house.
"Richard, get down here," he yelled. He heard Richard's feet on the floor above and in a moment he was dressed and downstairs.
"Sir?" he asked when he saw the small kid. Cormac had sat him on the couch and was standing there awkwardly.
"Richard, will you get the first aid kit, please?" Cormac asked. Richard nodded and disappeared. He came back, white gloved hands holding the first aid kit. He knelt in front of the boy and with a smile began cleaning the cut. The boy flinched when he touched him with the cloth.
"I'm Richard, what's your name?"
"Aiden," The small boy whispered.
"That's Cormac, he's all bark and no bite," Richard winked at Aiden. Aiden smiled and Richard wrapped his knee in gauze. He picked him up and held him on his hip before grabbing the keys.
"Do you know where you live, Aiden?" Richard asked, the boy nodded.
"I'll be back soon, Sir. You'll be alright won't you?" Richard asked. Cormac nodded silently. He moved to open the door for Richard and kept his face turned down away from the boy, though Aiden still got a glimpse at the badly scarred man.
David heard a knock at the door and looked over to see what time it was. The clock showed midnight and David growled.
"Who the hell would be knocking at midnight? I don't even know anyone here, yet," David cursed as he pulled on a shirt. He quickly hurried down the steps and opened the door to see a well dressed man holding Aiden.
"Aiden? What the hell are you doing?" he asked his son, the man handed him over and Richard sent him up to his room, telling him he would be up in a minute to talk to him. He invited the man in and turned on a few lights so they weren't talking in the dark.
"Excuse me for knocking so late," the man apologized.
"Of course, you were helping my son. What exactly was he doing out?" David asked.
"Yes, my name is Richard. I work down at Mr. McCarthy's house," Richard introduced himself. David shook his gloved hand and recognized him as the butler driving the expensive car earlier.
"Yes well, it seems Mr. McCarthy caught Aiden and his friends at his front door." Richard cleared his throat, Cormac didn't need to tell him what happened, it had happened before and it would again.
"Jesus," David rubbed his temples. "I am so, so sorry. I don't know what has gotten into that boy. Theres just been this talk amongst the children and it's gotten to him," David sighed.
"Talk, Sir?" Richard asked. David looked embarrassed.
"Uh, yes. Well the kids think that, Mr. McCarthy is a... uh... monster," David cringed at the word. Richard smiled but it hardly reached his eyes. It showed sadness and irritation, and a little bit of anger.
"Yes, that is a popular one," he muttered so quietly David almost didn't hear him.
"I'm so sorry about this," David repeated. "Is Mr. McCarthy alright?"
"Oh yes, he will be fine. Things like this happen quite often, actually," Richard spoke.
"Again, really sorry," David continued to apologize. Richard stood and the two men shook hands again.
"No harm done, I hope Aiden's knee isn't too bad," Richard smiled. David showed him out and the two said goodbye. As soon as the door was closed David stormed up to Aiden's room.
"What the hell were you thinking? You broke onto his property, and spied on the man?" David shouted. "Jesus, I thought I had raised you better than that, Aiden!"
"The other kids do it all the time," Aiden said.
"That doesn't make it alright! Can you imagine how Mr. McCarthy feels?" David shouted. Aiden lowered his head and cried quietly. David sighed and sat on the bed to hug him.
"That wasn't okay, Aiden. Tomorrow, after school, I want you to go and apologize to him," David scolded. Aiden nodded.
"I hope this at least proves that he isn't a monster right?" David laughed.
"But he is!"
"Oh my god, really Aiden? You sat face to face with the man and you still think he's a monster?" David said, astonished.
"Yes! Dad his face is all messed up!" Aiden said.
"I can't believe my son would judge someone just because they're different. You know I'm different, does that make me a monster?" David asked. When they had decided to fight for custody of Aiden, David had made sure Aiden knew why they were splitting up.
"No, but dad his face-"
"No, I don't want to hear another word about this. Tomorrow, after you get home from school, we are both going to go apologize to Mr. McCarthy. Understood?" David stood up.
"Yes," Aiden said, defeated.
"Good, now go to sleep. By the way, you're grounded. No video games for a month," David said as he walked out. Aiden looked sad but didn't disagree with him.
The next day at school Aiden spoke about the 'monster' and what had happened, of course none of his friends believed him and said he had lied about the whole thing. They were convinced that if the monster had caught him he wouldn't be alive to speak about it. Still, Aiden dreaded the end of school when he would have to face Cormac again.
"Don't bother taking your shoes off, we are just about to leave," David called out when he heard Aiden get inside the house. He heard his son sigh and drop his backpack on the floor.
"Dad, do I have to?" Aiden said.
"Yes, now go put your backpack in your room and we'll walk down there," David said. Aiden did as he was told and soon they left. The walk to the house was short but seemed shorter for Aiden. He watched the house grow taller and taller, until finally they were at the front door. His dad knocked and looked down at him, smiling. Richard answered the door and looked almost shocked to see them.
"Richard, hi. I was wondering if Mr. McCarthy was home, I would like to apologize to him and Aiden wants to do the same," David said. Richard looked slightly worried but covered it up quickly.
"Please, come in." As soon as they stepped inside the house soft piano music was heard. Directly in front of the door was the staircases leading up to the second floor. To the right was the dining room and he could see the kitchen door from where he stood, and to the left was the room where the music was coming from.