Warnings: Set in 1850s, HAU/Historical Romance, M/M sex, angst, a little humor, OOC, varying chapter lengths. Vague, brief references to: underage sex (consensual), het sex, BDSM (mild), Sub/Dom, prostitution. Original characters.
Pairing: 100% S/X (With brief, vague mentions of heterosexual/homosexual relationships with others .)
Ubeta'd All freerange boo, boos are mine and should be left unmolested
Status COMPLETED. Posted daily.
Link to previous chapters HERE
Comments: Comment if you want to, though it would be nice to know someone is reading it and will encourage a sequel.
Disclaimer: I own nothing, everything belongs to someone who is not me. I write for fun not profit.
Additional Warning:This is a LONG, SLOW moving fic. Feelings/relationships develop gradually. Sexual situations happen throughout. I have tried to be historically accurate but I do not profess to be a historian, I have knowingly messed with some dates. At this time Homosexuality carried the Death Penalty, here it is viewed as a mere eccentricity.
Note 1: Although Sunnydale character names have been used they are NOT in their Sunnydale persona's. William Rochester= A version of Spike NOT human William as in BTVS.
Note 2: My heartfelt thanks go out to my dear friend Bmblbee, for pre-reading the story and her encouragement. *Hugs*
Summary: Alexander Harris is orphaned at the age of six. He is sent to live with his wealthy but uncaring aunt Anya Jenkins in Gateshead and his three cruel cousins. Aged eight he is sent away to Lowood School For Boys and endures life there for ten miserable years, eight as a student and two as an assistant teacher. At last aged eighteen he is free to leave and secures employment at Thornfield as Tutor to the bright, temperamental and eccentric Drusilla and meets The Master of Thornfield, the handsome, aloof, passionate, possibly dangerous and mysterious William Rochester.
Rating: NC17 Overall
Rating: NC17 Overall
Love, Love changes everything:
Xander followed Drusilla to the small dining room, he hoped to catch a glimpse of the mysterious Lord Lindsey but there was no sign. Lunch was a quiet and unusually tense affair. Mrs Summers and Willow were in ill humor and it was Daniel took the trays up to the two gentlemen in Mr Rochester's rooms. In the end it was Mrs Summers flung down her napkin. "This will not do, it will not do at all!" Miss Mclay made a sympathetic noise and Xander looked up from his meal. "Whatever is wrong Ma'am?"
"Lord Lindsey, people dropping in for lunch and whatnot without giving a body prior notice that's what Mr Harris and him as being a titled gentleman should know better. Next he will complain it does not suit, of course it does not suit," she fanned herself. "we had no knowledge of his coming, so no time to prepare, and heaven help us if he stays for dinner." Willow made a strangled noise and everyone glanced at her. Xander patted Mrs Summers hand. "I'm sure his Lordship knows that he has caught you unawares by calling without prior notice and so will make allowances as will The Master."
"The Master is not to be faulted, this time," she sighed, "he was as unaware of his coming as we were. But if he's staying to dinner we must know it. God knows there is little time enough to prepare anything worth eating. Mrs Meakin will have to be fetched to help cook and Anna and Rosie to serve and Peter to serve the wines."
At this moment Daniel appeared. " 'e says the cold game pie is too salty." The women glared at him and Daniel retreated to the kitchen to collect and take up the Claret.
Lunch was completed in silence and so the afternoon commenced.
The afternoon was given over to what Xander called Informal or Leisure Subjects. These included French Conversation, Drawing and Watercolors, Piano, (Which he and Drusilla equally hated.) Nature Rambles, light reading and Needlepoint, Lace Making and Tapestry each taught equally by Miss Mclay and Mrs Summers.
Several afternoons a week, weather permitting, Mr Henderson came and took Drusilla riding. She was already a competent rider, though strictly forbidden by Mr Rochester to ride alone or to engage in jumping of any kind. He would arrive on his stout, gray cob, attach a leading rein to the Exmoor pony Drusilla had been given for her eighth Birthday and named 'Bucket' (By virtue that he kicked over any bucket left in his stall.) and off they would go for a jaunt around the grounds. This was greatly enjoyed by Drusilla, less so by Mr Henderson and nobody thought to ask Bucket. Today was a riding afternoon, Miss Edith was to accompany them for the first time and everyone was called on to lend a hand. Drusilla's former Shetland pony was tacked up, Miss Edith tied tightly into the saddle, a leading rein attached and given to Miss Drusilla and thus all three set off in stately procession.
Xander felt extremely sorry for Mr Henderson.
So it was Xander found himself with time to do as he pleased. At such times he was accustomed to read or if it was fine go for a walk, often he painted, an occupation which he loved, occasionally he fished, or walked into Millcote and frequently wrote his letters. Posting day was always Tuesday, but he knew Wes and Fred would be most interested to know Mr Rochester had come home and what manner of man he was, as soon as possible. He could write a short letter, starting it now and finishing it after Mr Rochester dismissed him for the evening and post it tomorrow, Thursday.
He went quickly toward his room and as he turned the head of the stairs was met with raucous laughter from Mr Rochester's room. One source of laughter was undoubtedly Mr Rochester and he presumed the other to be Lord Lindsey, it sounded as if they were having a high old time and Xander felt oddly irritated. He was also shocked to see Pilot lying forlornly outside his Master's door. The great hound raised it's head and recognizing Xander regarded him with friendly, amber eyes, whined and thumped his tail. Xander bent and patted his head and fondled his ears. Amber eyes followed Xander to his room and as Xander opened the door the dog stood, took the few strides to his room, pushed past him and lay down on the bedside rug. Xander opened his mouth to protest, but Pilot had already closed his eyes, his chin resting on his huge paws. Xander shrugged and closed the door.
He sat and started his letter describing the accident in the lane, though he largely skipped over his part in it. He described helping the stricken rider to his horse, though he left out the part where he grasped his thigh and boosted him into the saddle; Wes simply would not understand. In describing Rochester's character and disposition he was very thorough and very detailed and in recounting his physical appearance. He was so engrossed in his letter that he almost missed the opening and closing of Mr Rochester's door and the quick, firm footfalls on the stair. There came muffled voices from below and outside the sound of a horse being led under the arch from the stables.
Curiosity prompted him to look out of the window. Daniel held the horse whilst the young man placed his foot in the stirrup and swung his leg over the horse's back and landed lightly in the saddle. He gathered up the reins and prepared to turn the horse around when he stopped and seemed prompted to look up, he looked straight at Xander. It might have been expected that Xander would have drawn back, perhaps ducked out of sight, but he didn't and for a moment they locked eyes. A look of puzzlement and then irritation crossed Lord Lindsey's face, he swung the horse around barely missing Daniel, gave it a cut with his whip and galloped off.
Lindsey stormed through the house, his cousin trailing after him. "For God's sake Lindsey, it could have been anyone even a servant." Lindsey threw his hat forcefully into a chair. "Damn me Liam, I know what I saw, he was no servant, he had the audacity to hold my gaze and he wasn't dressed like a servant!"
Liam drew a deep breath. "Rochester is besotted with you, I can hardly believe in a few days he's set himself up with some boy especially at Thornfield." Lindsey glowered. "He wasn't even pleased to see me at first."
Liam ran his hand through his dark hair. "But he accepted the invitation?"
"Yes," Lindsey nodded, "in the end. Made some excuse about his horse slipping in the lane and unseating him and twisting his damned ankle, didn't know if he'd be sound by Saturday. I told him everyone was coming and he said he'd come for a couple of days, didn't want to leave Thornfield too long, now I bloody well know why."
Liam moved up behind him and slipped his arms around his waist, Lindsey leaned back against the much larger man. "Once he's here you can work on him, make him forget whatever distraction he has at Thornfield." Lindsey's eyes narrowed. "I've worked too damned hard, for too long to let some doe eyed boy snatch it away from us!" He hissed. Liam spun him round and lifted him into a heated kiss. "We'll just have to see that doesn't happen."