Fanny Hill, by John Cleland

Part 7

On the landing-place of the first pair of stairs, we were met by a young gentleman, extremely well dress’d, and a very pretty figure, to whom I was to be indebted for the first essay of the pleasures of the house. He saluted me with great gallantry, and handed me into the drawing room, the floor of which was overspread with a Turkey carpet, and all its furniture voluptuously adapted to every demand of the most study’d luxury; now too it was, by means of a profuse illumination, enliven’d by a light scarce inferior, and perhaps more favourable to joy, more tenderly pleasing, than that of broad sun-shine.

On my entrance into the room, I had the satisfaction to hear a buzz of approbation run through the whole company which now consisted of four gentlemen, including my particular (this was the cant-term of the house for one’s gallant for the time), the three young women, in a neat flowing dishabille, the mistress of the academy, and myself. I was welcomed and saluted by a kiss all round, in which, however, it was easy to discover, in the superior warmth of that of the men, the distinction of the sexes.

Aw’d and confounded as I was at seeing myself surrounded, caress’d, and made court to by so many strangers, I could not immediately familiarize myself to all that air of gaiety and joy which dictated their compliments, and animated their caresses.

They assur’d me that I was so perfectly to their taste as to have but one fault against me, which I might easily be cur’d of, and that was my modesty: this, they observ’d, might pass for a beauty the more with those who wanted it for a heightener; but their maxim was, that it was an impertinent mixture, and dash’d the cup so as to spoil the sincere draught of pleasure; they consider’d it accordingly as their mortal enemy, and gave it no quarter wherever they met with it. This was a prologue not unworthy of the revels that ensu’d.

In the midst of all the frolic and wantonnesses, which this joyous band had presently, and all naturally, run into, an elegant supper was serv’d in, and we sat down to it, my spark-elect placing himself next to me, and the other couples without order or ceremony. The delicate cheer and good wine soon banish’d all reserve; the conversation grew as lively as could be wished, without taking too loose a turn: these professors of pleasure knew too well, to stale impressions of it, or evaporate the imagination in words, before the time of action. Kisses however were snatch’d at times, or where a handkerchief round the neck interpos’d its feeble barrier, it was not extremely respected: the hands of the men went to work with their usual petulance, till the provocations on both sides rose to such a pitch that my particular’s proposal for beginning the country-dances was received with instant assent: for, as he laughingly added, he fancied the instruments were in tune. This was a signal for preparation, that the complaisant Mrs. Cole, who understood life, took for her cue of disappearing; no longer so fit for personal service herself, and content with having settled the order of battle, she left us the field, to fight it out at discretion.

As soon as she was gone, the table was remov’d form the middle, and became a side-board; a couch was brought into its place, of which when I whisperingly inquired the reason, of my particular, he told me that as it was chiefly on my account that this convention was met, the parties intended at once to humour their taste of variety in pleasures, and by an open publick enjoyment, to see me broke of any taint of reserve or modesty, which they look’d on as the poison of joy; that though they occasionally preached pleasure, and lived up to the text, they did not enthusiastically set up for missionaries, and only indulg’d themselves in the delights of a practical instruction of all the pretty women they lik’d well enough to bestow it upon, and who fell properly in the way of it; but that as such a proposal might be too violent, too shocking for a young beginner, the old standers were to set an example, which he hoped I would not be averse to follow, since it was to him I was devolv’d in favour of the first experiment; but that still I was perfectly at my liberty to refuse the party, which being in its nature one of pleasure, suppos’d an exclusion of all force or constraint.

My countenance expressed, no doubt, my surprise as my silence did my acquiescence. I was now embarked, and thoroughly determined on any voyage the company would take me on.

The first that stood up, to open the ball, were a cornet of horse, and that sweetest of olive-beauties, the soft and amorous Louisa. He led her to the couch “nothing loth,” on which he gave her the fall, and extended her at her length with an air of roughness and vigour, relishing high of amorous eagerness and impatience. The girl, spreading herself to the best advantage, with her head upon the pillow, was so concentred in what she was about, that our presence seemed the least of her care and concern. Her petticoats, thrown up with her shift, discovered to the company the finest turn’d legs and thighs that could be imagined, and in broad display, that gave us a full view of that delicious cleft of flesh into which the pleasing hair-grown mount over it, parted and presented a most inviting entrance between two close-hedges, delicately soft and pouting. Her gallant was now ready, having disencumber’d himself from his cloaths, overloaded with lace, and presently, his shirt removed, shew’d us his forces in high plight, bandied and ready for action. But giving us no time to consider the dimensions, he threw himself instantly over his charming antagonist, who receiv’d him as he pushed at once dead at mark like a heroine, without flinching; for surely never was girl constitutionally truer to the taste of joy, or sincerer in the expressions of its sensations, than she was: we could observe pleasure lighten in her eyes, as he introduc’d his plenipotentiary instrument into her; till, at length, having indulg’d her to its utmost reach, its irritations grew so violent, and gave her the spurs so furiously, that collected within herself, and lost to everything but the enjoyment of her favourite feelings, she retorted his thrusts with a just concert of springy heaves, keeping time so exactly with the most pathetic sighs, that one might have number’d the strokes in agitation by their distinct murmurs, whilst her active limbs kept wreathing and intertwisting with his, in convulsive folds: then the turtle-billing kisses, and the poignant painless lovebites, which they both exchang’d in a rage of delight, all conspiring towards the melting period. It soon came on when Louisa, in the ravings of her pleasure-frenzy, impotent of all restraint, cried out: “Oh Sir! . . . Good Sir! . . . pray do not spare me! ah! ah! . . .” All her accents now faltering into heart-fetched sighs, she clos’d her eyes in the sweet death, in the instant of which she was embalm’d by an injection, of which we could easily see the signs in the quiet, dying, languid posture of her late so furious driver, who was stopp’d of a sudden, breathing short, panting, and, for the time, giving up the spirit of pleasure. As soon as he was dismounted, Louisa sprung up, shook her petticoats, and running up to me, gave me a kiss and drew me to the side-board, to which she was herself handed by her gallant, where they made me pledge them in a glass of wine, and toast a droll health of Louisa’s proposal in high frolic.

By this time the second couple was ready to enter the lists: which were a young baronet, and that delicatest of charmers, the winning, tender Harriet. My gentle esquire came to acquaint me with it, and brought me back to the scene of action.

And, surely, never did one of her profession accompany her dispositions for the bare-faced part she was engaged to play with such a peculiar grace of sweetness, modesty and yielding coyness, as she did. All her air and motions breath’d only unreserv’d, unlimited complaisance without the least mixture of impudence, or prostitution. But what was yet more surprising, her spark-elect, in the midst of the dissolution of a publick open enjoyment, doted on her to distraction, and had, by dint of love and sentiments, touched her heart, tho’ for a while the restraint of their engagement to the house laid him under a kind of necessity of complying with an institution which himself had had the greatest share in establishing.

Harriet was then led to the vacant couch by her gallant, blushing as she look’d at me, and with eyes made to justify any thing, tenderly bespeaking of me the most favourable construction of the step she was thus irresistibly drawn into.

Her lover, for such he was, sat her down at the foot of the couch, and passing his arm round her neck, preluded with a kiss fervently applied to her lips, that visibly gave her life and spirit to go thro’ with the scene; and as he kiss’d, he gently inclined her head, till it fell back on a pillow disposed to receive it, and leaning himself down all the way with her, at once countenanc’d and endear’d her fall to her. There, as if he had guess’d our wishes, or meant to gratify at once his pleasure and his pride, in being the master, by the title of present possession, of beauties delicate beyond imagination, he discovered her breasts to his own touch, and our common view; but oh! what delicious manuals of love devotion! how inimitable fine moulded! small, round, firm, and excellently white: the grain of their skin, so soothing, so flattering to the touch! and their nipples, that crown’d them, the sweetest buds of beauty. When he had feasted his eyes with the touch and perusal, feasted his lips with kisses of the highest relish, imprinted on those all-delicious twin orbs, the proceeded downwards.

Her legs still kept the ground; and now, with the tenderest attention not to shock or alarm her too suddenly, he, by degrees, rather stole than rolled up her petticoats; at which, as if a signal had been given, Louisa and Emily took hold of her legs, in pure wantonness, and, in ease to her, kept them stretched wide abroad. Then lay exposed, or, to speak more properly, display’d the greatest parade in nature of female charms. The whole company, who, except myself, had often seen them, seemed as much dazzled, surpriz’d and delighted, as any one could be who had now beheld them for the first time. Beauties so excessive could not but enjoy the privileges of eternal novelty. Her thighs were so exquisitely fashioned, that either more in, or more out of flesh than they were, they would have declined from that point of perfection they presented. But what infinitely enrich’d and adorn’d them, was the sweet intersection formed, where they met, at the bottom of the smoothest, roundest, whitest belly, by that central furrow which nature had sunk there, between, the soft relieve of two pouting ridges, and which in this was in perfect symmetry of delicacy and miniature with the rest of her frame. No! nothing in nature could be of a beautifuller cut; then, the dark umbrage of the downy spring-moss that over-arched it bestowed, on the luxury of the landscape, a touching warmth, a tender finishing, beyond the expression of words, or even the paint of thought.

Her truly enamour’d gallant, who had stood absorbed and engrossed by the pleasure of the sight long enough to afford us time to feast ours (no fear of glutting!) addressed himself at length to the materials of enjoyment, and lifting the linen veil that hung between us and his master member of the revels, exhibited one whose eminent size proclaimed the owner a true woman’s hero. He was, besides, in every other respect an accomplish’d gentleman, and in the bloom and vigour of youth. Standing then between Harriet’s legs, which were supported by her two companions at their widest extension, with one hand he gently disclosed the lips of that luscious mouth of nature, whilst with the other, he stooped his mighty machine to its lure, from the height of his stiff stand-up towards his belly; the lips, kept open by his fingers, received its broad shelving head of coral hue: and when he had nestled it in, he hovered there a little, and the girls then deliver’d over to his hips the agreeable office of supporting her thighs; and now, as if meant to spin out his pleasure, and give it the more play for its life, he passed up his instrument so slow that we lost sight of it inch by inch, till at length it was wholly taken into the soft laboratory of love, and the mossy mounts of each fairly met together. In the mean time, we could plainly mark the prodigious effect the progressions of this delightful energy wrought in this delicious girl, gradually heightening her beauty as they heightened her pleasure. Her countenance and whole frame grew more animated; the faint blush of her cheeks, gaining ground on the white, deepened into a florid vivid vermilion glow, her naturally brilliant eyes now sparkled with ten-fold lustre; her languor was vanish’d, and she appeared, quick spirited, and alive all over. He now fixed, nailed, this tender creature with his home-driven wedge, so that she lay passive by force, and unable to stir, till beginning to play a strain of arms against this vein of delicacy, as he urged the to-and-fro confriction, he awaken’d, rous’d, and touch’d her so to the heart, that unable to contain herself, she could not but reply to his motions as briskly as her nicety of frame would admit of, till the raging stings of the pleasure rising towards the point, made her wild with the intolerable sensations of it, and she now threw her legs and arms about at random, as she lay lost in the sweet transport; which on his side declared itself by quicker, eager thrusts, convulsive gasps, burning sighs, swift laborious breathings, eyes darting humid fires: all faithful tokens of the imminent approaches of the last gasp of joy. It came on at length: the baronet led the extasy, which she critically joined in, as she felt the melting symptoms from him, in the nick of which glewing more ardently than ever his lips to hers, he shewed all the signs of that agony of bliss being strong upon him, in which he gave her the finishing titillation; inly thrill’d with which, we saw plainly that she answered it down with all effusion of spirit and matter she was mistress of, whilst a general soft shudder ran through all her limbs, which she gave a stretch-out of, and lay motionless, breathless, dying with dear delight; and in the height of its expression, shewing, through the nearly closed lids of her eyes, just the edges of their black, the rest being rolled strongly upwards in their extasy; then her sweet mouth appear’d languishingly open, with the tip of her tongue leaning negligently towards the lower range of her white teeth, whilst the natural ruby colour of her lips glowed with heightened life. Was not this a subject to dwell upon? And accordingly her lover still kept on her, with an abiding delectation, till compressed, squeezed and distilled to the last drop, he took leave with one fervent kiss, expressing satisfy’d desires, but unextinguish’d love.

As soon as he was off, I ran to her, and sitting down on the couch by her, rais’d her head, which she declin’d gently, and hung on my bosom, to hide her blushes and confusion at what had pass’d, till by degrees she recomposed herself and accepted of a restorative glass of wine from my spark, who had left me to fetch it her, whilst her own was re-adjusting his affairs and buttoning up; after which he led her, leaning languishingly upon him, to our stand of view round the couch.

And now Emily’s partner had taken her out for her share in the dance, when this transcendently fair and sweet tempered creature readily stood up; and if a complexion to put the rose and lily out of countenance, extreme pretty features, and that florid health and bloom for which the country-girls are so lovely, might pass her for a beauty, this she certainly was, and one ot the most striking of the fair ones.

Her gallant began first, as she stood, to disengage her breasts, and restore them to the liberty of nature, from the easy confinement of no more than a pair of jumps; but on their coming out to view, we thought a new light was added to the room, so superiourly shining was their whiteness; then they rose in so happy a swell as to compose her a wellformed fulness of bosom, that had such an effect on the eye as to seem flesh hardening into marble, of which it emulated the polished gloss, and far surpassed even the whitest, in the life and lustre of its colours, white veined with blue. Refrain who could from such provoking enticements to it in reach? He touched her breasts, first lightly, when the glossy smoothness of the skin eluded his hand, and made it slip along the surface; he press’d them, and the springy flesh that filled them thus pitted by force, rose again reboundingly with his hand, and on the instant effac’d the pressure: and alike indeed was the consistence of all those parts of her body throughout, where the fulness of flesh compacts and constitutes all that fine firmness which the touch is so highly attach’d to. When he had thus largely pleased himself with this branch of dalliance and delight, he truss’d up her petticoat and shift in a wisp to her waist, where being tuck’d in, she stood fairly naked on every side; a blush at this overspread her lovely face, and her eyes down cast to the ground seemed to be for quarter, when she had so great a right to triumph in all the treasures of youth and beauty that she now so victoriously display’d. Her legs were perfectly well shaped and her thighs, which she kept pretty close, shewed so white, so round, so substantial and abounding in firm flesh, that nothing could offer a stronger recommendation to the luxury of the touch, which he accordingly did not fail to indulge himself in. Then gently removing her hand, which in the first emotion of natural modesty she had carried thither, he gave us rather a glimpse than a view of that soft narrow chink running its little length downwards and hiding the remains of it between her thighs; but plain was to be seen the fringe of light-brown curls, in beauteous growth over it, that with their silky gloss created a pleasing variety from the surrounding white, whose lustre too, their gentle embrowning shade, considerably raised. Her spark then endeavoured, as she stood, by disclosing her thighs, to gain us a completer sight of that central charm of attraction, but not obtaining it so conveniently in that attitude, he led her to the foot of the couch, and bringing to it one of the pillows, gently inclin’d her head down, so that as she leaned with it over her crossed hands, straddling with her thighs wide spread, and jutting her body out, she presented a full back view of her person, naked to the waist. Her posteriours, plump, smooth, and prominent, form’d luxuriant tracts of animated snow, that splendidly filled the eye, till it was commanded down the parting or separation of those exquisitely white cliffs, by their narrow vale, and was there stopt, and attracted by the embowered bottom-cavity, that terminated this delightful vista and stood moderately gaping from the influence of her bended posture, so that the agreeable, interior red of the sides of the orifice came into view, and with respect to the white that dazzled round it, gave somewhat the idea of a pink slash in the glossiest white satin. Her gallant, who was a gentleman about thirty, somewhat inclin’d to a fatness that was in no sort displeasing, improving the hint thus tendered him of this mode of enjoyment, after settling her well in this posture, and encouraging her with kisses and caresses to stand him through, drew out his affair ready erected, and whose extreme length, rather disproportion’d to its breadth, was the more surprizing, as that excess is not often the case with those of his corpulent habit; making then the right and direct application, he drove it up to the guard, whilst the round bulge of those Turkish beauties of her’s tallying with the hollow made with the bent of his belly and thighs, as they curved inwards, brought all those parts, surely not undelightfully, into warm touch, and close conjunction; his hands he kept passing round her body, and employed in toying with her enchanting breasts. As soon too as she felt him at home as he could reach, she lifted her head a little from the pillow, and turning her neck, without much straining, but her cheeks glowing with the deepest scarlet, and a smile of the tenderest satisfaction, met the kiss he press’d forward to give her as they were thus close joined together: when leaving him to pursue his delights, she hid again her face and blushes with her hands and pillow, and thus stood passively and as favourably too as she could, whilst he kept laying at her with repeated thrusts and making the meeting flesh on both sides resound again with the violence of them; then ever as he backen’d from her, we could see between them part of his long whitestaff foamingly in motion, till, as he went on again and closed with her, the interposing hillocks took it out of sight. Sometimes he took his hands from the semi-globes of her bosoms, and transferred the pressure of them to those larger ones, the present subjects of his soft blockade, which he squeez’d, grasp’d and play’d with, till at length a pursuit of driving, so hotly urged, brought on the height of the fit, with such overpowering pleasure, that his fair partner became, now necessary to support him, panting, fainting and dying as he discharged; which she no sooner felt the killing sweetness of, than unable to keep her legs, and yielding to the mighty intoxication, she reeled, and falling forward on the couch, made it a necessity for him, if he would preserve the warm pleasurehold, to fall upon her, where they perfected, in a continued conjunction of body and extatic flow, their scheme of joys for that time.

As soon as he had disengag’d, the charming Emily got up, and we crowded round her with congratulations and other officious little services; for it is to be noted, that though all modesty and reserve were banished from the transaction of these pleasures, good manners and politeness were inviolably observ’d: here was no gross ribaldry, no offensive or rude behaviour, or ungenerous reproaches to the girls for their compliance with the humours and desires of the men. On the contrary, nothing was wanting to soothe, encourage, and soften the sense of their condition to them. Men know not in general how much they destroy of their own pleasure, when they break through the respect and tenderness due to our sex, and even to those of it who live only by pleasing them. And this was a maxim perfectly well understood by these polite voluptuaries, these profound adepts in the great art and science of pleasure, who never shew’d these votaries of theirs a more tender respect than at the time of those exercises of their complaisance, when they unlock’d their treasures of concealed beauty, and shewed out in the pride of their native charms, ever-more touching surely than when they paraded it in the artificial ones of dress and ornament.

The frolick was now come round to me, and it being my turn of subscription to the will and pleasure of my particular elect, as well as to that of the company, he came to me, and saluting me very tenderly, with a flattering eagerness, put me in mind of the compliances my presence there authoriz’d the hopes of, and at the same time repeated to me that if all this force of example had not surmounted any repugnance I might have to concur with the humours and desires of the company, that though the play was bespoke for my benefit, and great as his own private disappointment might be, he would suffer any thing, sooner than be the instrument of imposing a disagreeable task on me.

To this I answered, without the least hesitation or mincing grimace, that had I not even contracted a kind of engagement to be at his disposal without the least reserve, the example of such agreeable companions would alone determine me and that I was in no pain about any thing but my appearing to so great a disadvantage after such superior beauties. And take notice that I thought as I spoke. The frankness of the answer pleas’d them all; my particular was complimented on his acquisition, and, by way of indirect flattery to me, openly envied.

Mrs. Cole, by the way, could not have given me a greater mark of her regard than in managing for me the choice of this young gentleman for my master of the ceremonies: for, independent of his noble birth and the great fortune he was heir to, his person was even uncommonly pleasing, well shaped and tall; his face mark’d with the small-pox, but no more than what added a grace of more manliness to features rather turned to softness and delicacy, was marvellously enliven’d by eyes which were of the clearest sparkling black; in short, he was one whom any woman would, in the familiar style, readily call a very pretty fellow.

I was now handed by him to the cock-pit of our match, where, as I was dressed in nothing but a white morning gown, he vouchsafed to play the male-Abigail on this occasion, and spared me the confusion that would have attended the forwardness of undressing myself: my gown then was loosen’d in a trice, and I divested of it; my stay next offered an obstacle which readily gave way, Louisa very readily furnishing a pair of scissors to cut the lace; off went that shell and dropping my upper-coat, I was reduced to my under one and my shift, the open bosom of which gave the hands and eyes all the liberty they could wish. Here I imagin’d the stripping was to stop, but I reckoned short: my spark, at the desire of the rest, tenderly begged that I would not suffer the small remains of a covering to rob them of a full view of my whole person; and for me, who was too flexibly obsequious to dispute any point with them, and who considered the little more that remain’d as very immaterial, I readily assented to whatever he pleased. In an instant, then, my under-petticoat was untied and at my feet, and my shift drawn over my head, so that my cap, slightly fasten’d, came off with it, and brought all my hair down (of which, be it again remembered without vanity, that I had a very fine head) in loose disorderly ringlets, over my neck and shoulders, to the not unfavourable set-off of my skin.

I now stood before my judges in all the truth of nature, to whom I could not appear a very disagreeable figure, if you please to recollect what I have before said of my person, which time, that at certain periods of life robs us every instant of our charms, had, at that of mine, then greatly improved into full and open bloom, for I wanted some months of eighteen. My breasts, which in the state of nudity are ever capital points, now in no more than in graceful plenitude, maintained a firmness and steady independence of any stay or support that dared and invited the test of the touch. Then I was as tall, as slim-shaped as could be consistent with all that juicy plumpness of flesh, ever the most grateful to the senses of sight and touch, which I owed to the health and youth of my constitution. I had not, however, so thoroughly renounc’d all innate shame as not to suffer great confusion at the state I saw myself in; but the whole troop round me, men and women, relieved me with every mark of applause and satisfaction, every flattering attention to raise and inspire me with even sentiments of pride on the figure I made, which, my friend gallantly protested, infinitely outshone all other birthday finery whatever; so that had I leave to set down, for sincere, all the compliments these connoisseurs overwhelmed me with upon this occasion, I might flatter myself with having pass’d my examination with the approbation of the learned.

My friend however, who for this time had alone the disposal of me, humoured their curiosity, and perhaps his own, so far that he placed me in all the variety of postures and lights imaginable, pointing out every beauty under every aspect of it, not without such parentheses of kisses, such inflammatory liberties of his roving hands, as made all shame fly before them, and a blushing glow give place to a warmer one of desire, which led me even to find some relish in the present scene.

But in this general survey, you may be sure, the most material spot of me was not excus’d the strictest visitation; nor was it but agreed, that I had not the least reason to be diffident of passing even for a maid, on occasion: so inconsiderable a flaw had my preceding adventures created there, and so soon had the blemish of an over-stretch been repaired and worn out at my age, and in my naturally small make in that part.

Now, whether my partner had exhausted all the modes of regaling the touch or sight, or whether he was now ungovernably wound up to strike, I know not; but briskly throwing off his clothes, the prodigious heat bred by a close room, a great fire, numerous candles, and even the inflammatory warmth of these scenes, induced him to lay aside his shirt too, when his breeches, before loosen’d, now gave up their contents to view, and shew’d in front the enemy I had to engage with, stiffly bearing up the port of its head unhooded, and glowing red. Then I plainly saw what I had to trust to: it was one of those just true-siz’d instruments, of which the masters have a better command than the more unwieldy, inordinate siz’d ones are generally under. Straining me then close to his bosom, as he stood up fore-right against me and applying to the obvious niche its peculiar idol, he aimed at inserting it, which, as I forwardly favoured, he effected at once by canting up my thighs over his naked hips, and made me receive every inch, and close home; so that stuck upon the pleasure-pivot, and clinging round his neck, in which and in his hair I hid my face, burningly flushing with my present feelings as much as with shame, my bosom glew’d to his; he carried me once round the couch, on which he then, without quitting the middle-fastness, or dischannelling, laid me down, and began the pleasure-grist. But so provokingly predisposed and primed as we were, by all the moving sights of the night, our imagination was too much heated not to melt us of the soonest: and accordingly, I no sooner felt the warm spray darted up my inwards from him, but I was punctually on flow, to share the momentary extasy; but I had yet greater reason to boast of out harmony: for finding that all the flames of desire were not yet quench’d within me, but that rather, like wetted coals, I glowed the fiercer for this sprinkling, my hot-mettled spark, sympathizing with me, and loaded for a double fire, recontinu’d the sweet battery with undying vigour; greatly pleas’d at which I gratefully endeavoured to accommodate all my motions to his best advantage and delight; kisses, squeezes, tender murmurs, all came into play, till our joys, growing more turbulent and riotous, threw us into a fond disorder, and as they raged to a point, bore us far from ourselves into an ocean of boundless pleasures, into which we both plunged together in a transport of taste. Now all the impressions of burning desire, from the lively scenes I had been spectatress of, ripened by the heat of this exercise, and collecting to a head, throbb’d and agitated me with insupportable irritations: I did not now enjoy a calm of reason enough to perceive, but I extatically, indeed, felt the power of such rare and exquisite provocatives, as the examples of the night had proved towards thus exalting our pleasures: which, with great joy, I sensibly found my gallant shared in, by his nervous and home expressions of it: his eyes flashing eloquent flames, his action infuriated with the stings of it, all conspiring to rise my delight by assuring me of his. Lifted then to the utmost pitch of joy that human life can bear,undestroyed by excess, I touch’d that sweetly critical point, whence scarce prevented by the injection from my partner, I dissolved, and breaking out into a deep drawn sigh, sent my whole sensitive soul down to that passage where escape was denied it, by its being so deliciously plugged and chok’d up. Thus we lay a few blissful instants, overpowered, still, and languid; till, as the sense of pleasure stagnated, we recover’d from out trance, and he slipt out of me, not however before he had protested his extreme satisfaction by the tenderest kiss and embrace, as well as by the most cordial expressions.

The company, who had stood round us in a profound silence, when all was over, help’d me to hurry on my cloaths in an instant, and complimented me on the sincere homage they could not escape observing had been done (as they termed it) to the sovereignty of my charms, in my receiving a double payment of tribute at one juncture. But my partner, now dress’d again, signaliz’d, above all, a fondness unbated by the circumstance of recent enjoyment; the girls too kiss’d and embraced me, assuring me that for that time, or indeed any other, unless I pleased, I was to go thro’ no farther publick trials, and that I was now consummatedly initiated, and one of them.

As it was an inviolable law for every gallant to keep to his partner, for the night especially, and even till he relinquish’d possession over to the community, in order to preserve a pleasing property and to avoid the disgusts and indelicacy of another arrangement, the company, after a short refection of biscuits and wine, tea and chocolate, served in at now about one in the morning, broke up, and went off in pairs. Mrs. Cole had prepared my spark and me an occasional field-bed, to which we retir’d, and there ended the night in one continued strain of pleasure, sprightly and uncloy’d enough for us not to have formed one wish for its ever knowing an end. In the morning, after a restorative breakfast in bed, he got up, and with very tender assurances of a particular regard for me, left me to the composure and refreshment of a sweet slumber; waking out of which, and getting up to dress before Mrs. Cole should come in, I found in one of my pockets a purse of guineas, which he had slipt there; and just as I was musing on a liberality I had certainly not expected, Mrs. Cole came in, to whom I immediately communicated the present, and naturally offered her whatever share she pleas’d: but assuring me that the gentleman had very nobly rewarded her, she would on no terms, no entreaties, no shape I could put it in, receive any part of it. Her denial, she observed, was not affectation of grimace, and proceeded to read me such admirable lessons on the economy of my person and my purse as I became amply paid for my general attention and conformity to in the course of my acquaintance with the town. After which, changing the discourse, she fell on the pleasures of the preceding night, where I learn’d, without much surprize, as I began to enter on her character, that she had seen every thing that had passed, from a convenient place managed solely for that purpose, and of which she readily made me the confidante.

She had scarce finish’d this, when the little troop of love, the girls my companions, broke in and renewed their compliments and caresses. I observed with pleasure that the fatigues and exercises of the night had not usurped in the least on the life of their complexion, or the freshness of their bloom: this I found, by their confession, was owing to the management and advice of our rare directress. They went down then to figure it, as usual, in the shop, whilst I repair’d to my lodgings, where I employed myself till I returned to dinner at Mrs. Cole’s.

Here I staid in constant amusement, with one or other of these charming girls, till about five in the evening; when seiz’d with a sudden drowsy fit, I was prevailed on to go up and doze it off on Harriet’s bed, who left me on it to my repose. There then I lay down in my cloaths and fell fast asleep, and had now enjoyed, by guess, about an hour’s rest, when I was pleasingly disturbed by my new and favourite gallant, who, enquiring for me, was readily directed where to find me. Coming then into my chamber, and seeing me lie alone, with my face turn’d from the light towards the inside of the bed, he, without more ado, just slipped off his breeches, for the greater ease and enjoyment of the naked touch; and softly turning up my petticoat and shift behind, opened the prospect of the back avenue to the genial seat of pleasure; where, as I lay at my side length, inclining rather face downward, I appeared full fair, and liable to be entered. /Laying himself then gently down by me, he invested me behind, and giving me to feel the warmth of his body as he applied his thighs and belly close to me, and the endeavours of that machine, whose touch has something so exquisitely singular in it, to make its way good into me. I wak’d pretty much startled at first, but seeing who it was, disposed myself to turn to him, when he gave me a kiss, and desiring me to keep my posture, just lifted up my upper thigh, and ascertaining the right opening, soon drove it up to the farthest: satisfied with which, and solacing himself with lying so close in those parts, he suspended motion, and thus steeped in pleasure, kept me lying on my side, into him, spoon-fashion, as he term’d it, from the snug indent of the back part of my thighs, and all upwards, into the space of the bending between his thighs and belly; till, after some time, that restless and turbulent inmate, impatient by nature of longer quiet, urg’d him to action, which now prosecuting with all the usual train of toying, kissing, and the like, ended at length in the liquid proof on both sides, that we had not exhausted, or at least were quickly recruited of last night’s draughts of pleasure in us.

With this noble and agreeable youth liv’d I in perfect joy and constancy. He was full bent on keeping me to himself, for the honey-month at least; but his stay in London was not even so long, his father, who had a post in Ireland, taking him abruptly with him on his repairing thither. Yet even then I was near keeping hold of his affection and person, as he had propos’d, and I had consented to follow him in order to go to Ireland after him, as soon as he could be settled there; but meeting with an agreeable and advantageous match in that kingdom, he chose the wiser part, and forebore sending for me, but at the same time took care that I should receive a very magnificent present, which did not however compensate for all my deep regret on my loss of him.

This event also created a chasm in our little society, which Mrs. Cole, on the foot of her usual caution, was in no haste to fill up; but then it redoubled her attention to procure me, in the advantages of a traffic for a counterfeit maidenhead, some consolation for the sort of widowhood I had been left in; and this was a scheme she had never lost prospect of, and only waited for a proper person to bring it to bear with.

But I was, it seems, fated to be my own caterer in this, as I had been in my first trial of the market.

I had now pass’d near a month in the enjoyment of all the pleasures of familiarity and society with my companions, whose particular favourites (the baronet excepted, who soon after took Harriet home) had all, on the terms of community establish’d in the house, solicited the gratification of their taste for variety in my embraces; but I had with the utmost art and address, on various pretexts, eluded their pursuit, without giving them cause to complain; and this reserve I used neither out of dislike of them, or disgust of the thing, but my true reason was my attachment to my own, and my tenderness of invading the choice of my companions, who outwardly exempt, as they seem’d, from jealousy, could not but in secret like me the better for the regard I had for, without making a merit of it to them. Thus easy, and beloved by the whole family, did I go on; when one day, that, about five in the afternoon, I stepped over to a fruiterer’s shop in Covent Garden, to pick some table fruit for myself and the young women, I met with the following adventure.

Whilst I was chaffering for the fruit I wanted, I observ’d myself follow’d by a young gentleman, whose rich dress first attracted my notice; for the rest, he had nothing remarkable in his person, except that he was pale, thin-made, and ventur’d himself upon legs rather of the slenderest. Easy was it to perceive, without seeming to perceive it, that it was me he wanted to be at; and keeping his eyes fixed on me, till he came to the same basket that I stood at, and cheapening, or rather giving the first price ask’d for the fruit, began his approaches. Now most certainly I was not at all out of figure to pass for a modest girl. I had neither the feathers nor fumet of a taudry townmiss: a straw hat, a white gown, clean linen, and above all, a certain natural and easy air of modesty (which the appearances of never forsook me, even on those occasions that I most broke in upon it, in practice) were all signs that gave him no opening to conjecture my condition. He spoke to me; and this address from a stranger throwing a blush into my cheeks that still set him wider off the truth, I answered him with an aukwardness and confusion the more apt to impose, as there was really a mixture of the genuine in them. But when proceeding, on the foot of having broken the ice, to join discourse, he went into other leading questions, I put so much innocence, simplicity, and even childishness into my answers that on no better foundation, liking my person as he did, I will answer for it, he would have been sworn for my modesty. There is, in short, in the men, when once they are caught, by the eye especially, a fund of cullibility that their lordly wisdom little dreams of, and in virtue of which the most sagacious of them are seen so often our dupes. Amongst other queries he put to me, one was whether I was married. I replied that I was too young to think of that this many a year. To that of my age, I answered, and sunk a year upon him, passing myself for not seventeen. As to my way of life, I told him I had serv’d an apprenticeship to a milliner in Preston, and was come to town after a relation, that I had found, on my arrival, was dead, and now liv’d journey-woman to a milliner in town. That last article, indeed, was not much of the side of what I pretended to pass for; but it did pass, under favour of the growing passion I had inspir’d him with. After he had next got out of me, very dextrously as he thought, what I had no sort of design to make reserve of, my own, my mistress’s name, and place of abode, he loaded me with fruit, all the rarest and dearest he could pick out, and sent me home, pondering on what might be the consequence of this adventure.

As soon then as I came to Mrs. Cole’s, I related to her all that passed, on which she very judiciously concluded that if he did not come after me there was no harm done, and that, if he did, as her presage suggested to her he would, his character and his views should be well sifted, so as to know whether the game was worth the springs; that in the mean time nothing was easier than my part in it, since no more rested on me than to follow her cue and promptership throughout, to the last act.

The next morning, after an evening spent on his side, as we afterwards learnt, in perquisitions into Mrs. Cole’s character in the neighbourhood (than which nothing could be more favourable to her design upon him), my gentleman came in his chariot to the shop, where Mrs. Cole alone had an inkling of his errand. Asking then for her, he easily made a beginning of acquaintance by be-speaking some millinery ware: when, as I sat without lifting up my eyes, and pursuing the hem of a ruffle with the utmost composure and simplicity of industry, Mrs. Cole took notice that the first impressions I made on him ran no risk of being destroyed by those of Louisa and Emily, who were then sitting at work by me. After vainly endeavouring to catch my eyes in re-encounter with his (as I held my head down, affecting a kind of consciousness of guilt for having, by speaking to him, given him encouragement and means of following me), and after giving Mrs. Cole direction when to bring the things home herself, and the time he should expect them, he went out, taking with him some goods that he paid for liberally, for the better grace of his introduction.

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Last updated Saturday, March 1, 2014 at 20:37