Title: Mr Wooster Takes a Job
Author: Sky Blue Reverie skyblue_reverie
Fandom: Jeeves and Wooster
Rating: NC-17. I'm not joking, peoples, this one is seriously kinkeh. It's not for the kiddies!
Word Count: Approximately 8,500
Summary: Third in the series, after The Matter of Mr Wooster's Headaches and Jeeves and the Serious Consequences. Pretty much what the title implies, plus smutty belt!kink. I strongly recommend that you read these in order, if you haven't read the first two yet. It will make much more sense that way.
Disclaimer: *checks again hopefully* Nope, still not mine.
A/N: Roses, chocolate, and massive thanks to leaper182, rivers_bend, fenriss, weaselwoman13, and cicerothewriter for beta, you are all fabulous and much appreciated! Thanks also to the corking maxine_penborne for requesting bottom!Jeeves. Poems quoted are by Alice Meynell; you can find both of the poems I quoted, and others by her, here.
Feedback: YESPLZKTHXBAI. I mean, er, why yes, I would love feedback, thank you so very much indeed.
Mr Wooster is a witty and engaging storyteller, and it is he who most often chronicles our adventures. However, I have occasionally put pen to paper myself in order to, as it were, fill in the gaps left in Mr Wooster's narratives. I have found, to my surprise, that there is a certain catharsis in putting to words my experiences and thoughts. It is for this reason that I have begun my own chronicles, which I keep under lock and key due to the potentially ruinous consequences to Mr Wooster and myself should they be revealed.
I have already written of how my employer and I came to our understanding; the next turning point in our relations came some weeks later, when he brought home a chartreuse flowered tie, a gaudy creation which gave his handsome features an unfortunate bilious cast. As a result of Mr Wooster's insistence upon wearing this dreadful tie, our relations became even more unconventional than they had been before. I shall not recount the episode here, since he has written about it in some detail. Suffice it to say that after an initial moment of horror wherein I believed that I had presumed too much and that my employer would be disgusted by the incident, he reassured me that he had found it as pleasurable as I had, to my deep relief and wonder.
Following this encounter, our relations returned to their former state of intimacy, neither of us mentioning the incident of the tie. I was not certain whether Mr Wooster would wish to explore this aspect of our relations again. I told myself that, if he did not, he would simply avoid making any outré sartorial selections. Though this would be a most favourable result, I could not suppress a slight feeling of disappointment at the thought. In any event, some few weeks passed relatively uneventfully.
"Jeeves," he said one day, while reclining on the sofa, smoking a cigarette. "I've been thinking. I fancy it's time for me to get a job."
"A job, sir?" I asked somewhat incredulously.
"Yes, Jeeves, you know, honest toil, carrying the wood, hewing the water. The kind of thing that Boko Fittleworth once tried. Didn't suit him, you know, but I fancy I'm made of sterner stuff than old Boko."
I looked at him with amused indulgence. My employer occasionally gets strange whims such as this, and it is usually the work of a moment to distract him or change his mind.
"Sir, if you had a job you should not be able to take the trip to America that we had planned for next week," I pointed out.
"Jeeves, America can wait. I believe that America is a rather large body of land, and I don't think it's going to get up and wander off. It will still be there when I have earned my yearly vacation."
"Indeed, sir. However, we have timed our trip so that I may take advantage of the salmon fishing season, and should the trip be postponed, I would miss the opportunity."
He waved this objection aside with an airy motion, stubbed out his cigarette and rubbed his hands together with determination. "You can fish some other time, Jeeves. I never thought I would say this, but Aunt Agatha is right. I have been wasting my life in idleness for far too long. I want to contribute to society. Well, just look at you, Jeeves. You work, keeping me in comfort and whatnot, and you seem to find it jolly rewarding, what? I rather fancy that I shall find honest labour equally enjoyable."
I lost some of my amusement. This had the sound of one of my employer's idées fixes, one of his rebellions against my advice and against all common sense. It goes without saying that I considered it completely unsuitable for my employer to actually hold a job. He had no need of the money, and the drudgery of a job would not suit his sunny and lighthearted temperament. However, handling these notions of his required finesse rather than outright disapprobation.
"It sounds most interesting, sir. If I may ask, what profession do you propose to undertake?"
"You may ask, Jeeves, you may ask indeed. Just yesterday I was having lunch with Tuppy Glossop at the Drones, and he told me about the juiciest opportunity that he's had yet."
I began to see a glimmer of hope. Mr Glossop's business schemes tended to be disastrous and short-lived. Perhaps we would still be able to take our scheduled voyage to America, particularly were I to involve myself in the matter. I had been looking forward to participating in the salmon season, and I was loathe to postpone the trip.
"It sounds most interesting, sir. I should be intrigued to hear the details of Mr Glossop's plan."
"Well, it's like this, Jeeves. Tuppy met this topping fellow, by the name of Gilbert Pulvermacher, who manufactures this tonic medicine. Really fruity stuff, picks you up, keeps you in the pink. He needs sort of an endorsement from some reputable doctor to sell the stuff, and of course Tuppy's uncle Sir Roderick is just the chap for the job. In exchange for using Sir Roderick's picture on the label, this Pulvermacher cove is going to let us sell the stuff for him. We just pay him a small pittance for each bottle, and then sell the stuff and split the proceeds with him. Now, isn't that a corker?"
I hardly knew where to begin. "Sir, these patent medicines are often less than efficacious. I would hesitate for you to involve your good name or that of your acquaintances in such a scheme."
"Oh, no worries about that, Jeeves. Tuppy had a sample with him, and I tried a bit. Well, it can't hold a candle to your restorative preparations, but the stuff peps you right up. It's the real thing, all right."
Inwardly I groaned at my employer's foolish naïveté in swallowing a completely unknown and possibly dangerous substance, but I maintained my composure and tried another tack. "Sir, has Mr Glossop obtained his uncle's permission to use his likeness?"
"Oh, Sir Roderick won't mind. Why would it bother him to have his picture bunged on a few bottles? Anyway, Tuppy said he'd handle that end of things. All I've got to do is go about and bang on a few doors – the stuff will practically sell itself."
"Sir, it is likely that you should have to wake long before your customary hour in order to participate in this… opportunity."
"Jeeves, I am capable of rising with the lark when the occasion warrants it. Why, just the other morning, Jeeves, you woke me up before sunrise because you wanted – " he broke off, blushing.
"Yes, sir," I said, and cleared my throat. While I was tempted to follow that comment with a slightly prurient remark, if only because I enjoy seeing Mr Wooster blush, I forced myself to return to the matter at hand. I tried one last time to make him see reason. "Sir, I fear that this unknown gentleman may be taking advantage of your good nature. He may perhaps be a confidence artist, gaining your trust and taking your money without providing anything of value in return."
"Nonsense, Jeeves," he said. "Tuppy's met the fellow and says he's all right. That's good enough for me. You really do have a most cynical view of human nature, Jeeves. You should ease up on the bally suspicion once in a while, have some faith in your fellow man."
Stung, I abandoned my efforts to save him from himself for the moment. "Very good, sir," I said stiffly.
The next day I implemented the first stage in my strategy to convince Mr Wooster of the improvidence of his idea. I had little hope that this method would work, but it had occasionally been effective in the past. I merely pretended that the entire conversation regarding his intention to take a job had not occurred and that we were going to America as planned.
Accordingly, after seeing Mr Wooster off to go lunch at the Drones club, I retrieved our large traveling baggage and laid out my fishing equipment. I left several colour brochures expounding upon the glories of the American wilderness in full view on the end-table where he could not fail to notice them upon his return.
When he came home from lunch, he found me assiduously cleaning my fishing gear.
"Jeeves, may I ask what you are doing?"
"Yes, sir, I am preparing for our voyage to America."
"Yes, I can see that, Jeeves. What I mean is, why are you preparing? Did I not make it clear that we aren't going to America?"
"I am sorry, sir. I thought that perhaps you had reconsidered. I judged that, upon further reflection, you would realize that the –ahem– business opportunity of which you spoke could wait until we returned from abroad, but that the salmon, like time and tide, wait for no man."
"No, Jeeves, I had not reconsidered. I know how disappointed you are about your blasted salmon, but you will just have to bear up."
"Sir, if you will glance at this literature you will see that – " I began, but he interrupted.
"No, Jeeves, I don't want to look at any bally literature. There will be no further discussion. Put these things away – we're not going to America. This is important to me, and I hope I shall have your support. But either way, my mind is made up."
"As you say, sir," I said resentfully.
Just over a week later, Mr Wooster brought Mr Glossop and their new business partner home to lunch at the flat. Serving the meal gave me ample opportunity to observe Mr Pulvermacher and hear his exchanges with my employer and his friend. I took an immediate dislike to the man. He was a small, ferret-faced individual with ginger hair and a long scar over his right eyebrow. He had an urbane and suave manner, and spoke genially, but his eyes were shifty, and he avoided looking at anybody directly, his gaze instead flitting about the room, seeming to appraise each of the items he saw.
Mr Pulvermacher had brought with him a map of London, with several routes marked out for planned sales calls. After lunch, the three men pored over the map, deciding which of the routes to attempt first, and Mr Pulvermacher coached the other two as they practiced their patter. It turned my stomach to hear my employer turned into a common snake oil salesman by that dreadful person.
After I had shown Mr Pulvermacher and Mr Glossop out of the flat, my employer turned to me. "Well, Jeeves, what do you think now that you've had a chance to observe the fellow yourself?"
"It is hardly my place to say, sir."
"Nonsense, Jeeves, that's never stopped you before. Now, out with it! I want to hear your opinion."
"Well, sir, if I may say so, I did not care for Mr Pulvermacher's manner. He did not appear to me to be a trustworthy individual."
"Well, Jeeves, I must say I'm disappointed in you. I never took you for a snob. I admit, old Gilbert is not, shall we say, of the noblesse, but I think he has a certain whatsit about him. No, Jeeves, I believe that you are jealous. A bit of the green-eyed monster, I daresay. You've been the only one of us to be gainfully occupied in the time I've known you, and now that I'm horning in on your territory, so to speak, you're feeling a bit threatened."
I opened my mouth to refute this accusation, but he forestalled me, raising his hand, palm outward. "No, no, Jeeves, don't try to deny it. The Wooster brain has swept smoothly into action, and I see all. Understandable, I suppose, even inevitable, but still, you must attempt to overcome this unworthy reaction. I will be beginning my new occupation tomorrow, and if you cannot find it within yourself to be happy for me, you must at least learn to accept the fact that I will henceforth be a man of affairs." He delivered this speech with a self-righteous air.
"If that will be all, sir, I must return to my duties," I said coldly.
"Yes, Jeeves, that will be all for now," he said, looking after me sadly.
I cleaned up the remnants of lunch in a state of some perturbation. This obsession of Mr Wooster's was becoming ridiculous, and it was time to put a stop to it. While washing up the dishes, I refined my plans.
That afternoon, I procured the sales map from among his papers and examined it briefly, noting which streets were part of my employer's planned sales route before returning it. I then went out to do the marketing. While I was out, I paid several local boys to canvass Mr Wooster's planned route, ringing doorbells and attempting to obtain donations for fictitious charitable organizations. I urged them to be as persistent as possible in their attempts to collect, and to visit the same houses repeatedly over the course of the afternoon and evening. In addition to the remuneration I provided, I promised them that they could keep any moneys collected, certain that any such amounts would be minimal.
I observed them for a few moments as they began their work, to make sure that they understood their task. The results were gratifying. Within moments of a particular bell being rung, a door was opened and the occupant was subjected to a truly obnoxious solicitation. The door was then quickly slammed shut. A few moments later, the same bell was rung again by a different boy, with the same result. I watched this process repeat a few times, always with the same outcome. Mr Wooster would find no sympathetic faces when he began his work in this neighbourhood the next day. I turned away and started for home with satisfaction.
When I returned to the flat, I found that several large boxes had been delivered, containing dozens of bottles of Glossop's Pick-U-Up, a noxious-looking pink fluid. Each glass bottle bore a florid label which promised unlikely results and prominently featured a portrait of Sir Roderick Glossop.
Mr Wooster was in a state of excitement, carefully packing the bottles into his new leather carrying-case, poring over his route-map, and practicing his sales pitch. I ignored him as well as I could, performing my evening chores. Eventually he finished his preparations and relaxed in the sitting room with a drink and a cigarette.
We spoke little for the remainder of the day. He looked at me sadly and shook his head with a martyred air whenever he caught my eye; for my part, I was still indignant over his uncalled-for remarks concerning my alleged jealousy, and I retreated into my role as valet.
That evening I slept in my own bedroom, the first time I had done so since we reached our understanding, apart from our brief sojourn at Totleigh Towers. I could hear him tossing and turning restlessly, unable to sleep, and I fared no better myself. Still, there was a silver lining – he would be tired and out-of-sorts for his first day of working life, which would magnify the unpleasantness of the experience.
It was long past midnight, and I had finally managed to fall into a fitful slumber, when he crept into my room. His soft footsteps immediately woke me, and I sat up in bed. I could just barely make out his form in the moonlight filtering in through my window.
"Er, Jeeves," he whispered. "I can't… that is to say, I'm not… Well, I'm awfully sorry about my, er, harsh words earlier, old thing."
"Thank you, sir," I said.
"Not that I don't think I was entirely justified, you understand," he began, but broke off when he saw my face. "But, well, let's not discuss it any further. Water under the bridge and all that. Now, er, I'm having a bit of trouble sleeping. Do you suppose I could…" he trailed off hopefully.
I pulled back the bedclothes in invitation and he immediately climbed into bed with me, settling contentedly into my arms. We were both asleep within moments.
The next morning he was excited and nervous, barely touching his breakfast, and hardly able to stand still long enough for me to knot his tie. His childlike high spirits touched a chord in me, and I briefly regretted the fact that his enthusiasm would surely be short-lived. It has never been my intention to crush his hopes, but I knew that it was inevitable that this particular ambition would fail, and it would be far better for both of us if it happened sooner rather than later. I saw him off with a kiss, beguiled despite myself by the sparkle in his eye.
The day went by monotonously; time always seems to pass more slowly when I am not in Mr Wooster's company. I completed my daily chores all too quickly and settled down in my room with an improving book, but the flat seemed strangely quiet without his bright voice ringing out in conversation, or one of his light-hearted melodies emanating from the piano. I found my eyes traveling over the same page repeatedly without taking in the meaning of the words. Finally I gave up any pretense of reading and occupied myself by polishing all of Mr Wooster's shoes until they had attained a mirror-like shine.
When he came home that evening, he looked as worn-down and dejected as I had ever seen him.
"What ho, Jeeves," he said tiredly, giving me a brief kiss on the cheek before dropping his case and proceeding into the sitting room. I admit that I softened when I saw him sink onto the sofa, positively drooping with exhaustion. Mr Wooster's cheerful and optimistic nature is a constant joy to me, and it was difficult to see him so downcast. Nevertheless, this pain was necessary for my employer to realize the folly of his actions.
I brought him a drink and left him in solitary contemplation while I went into the kitchen to prepare the evening meal. After a few moments, he joined me and sat at the kitchen table.
"I say, Jeeves, this working gag isn't as easy as you make it look. In fact, it rather knocks the stuffing out of a chap," he said.
"Thank you, sir," I said. "Perhaps you will become accustomed to it after you have worked nearly every day for many years, as I have."
"Years?" His voice shot up a few octaves and became a bit strangled as he said this word. "Yes, well, I suppose, perhaps I would become used to it…" He sounded doubtful.
"I am certain that is the case, sir."
"Do you know, Jeeves, that I didn't make a single sale today? I never knew that people were so bally unfriendly. I can't remember when I've had a door slammed in my face so heartily. I mean to say, most times when I stay somewhere for a few days I get seen off with unflattering enthusiasm, but never with such dashed unpleasantness as I was treated to today."
"I am sorry to hear it, sir. I should be most interested in hearing about the details of your day, if you would care to confide in me."
As I stood in front of the stove preparing our meal, he related a few comical incidents from his day, including a rather amusing retelling of having a ferocious dog set upon him and barely escaping with the seat of his trousers intact. He told these stories in a light, conversational manner, but I could hear the discouragement behind his resolutely cheerful tone.
When I made to set his place at the dining room table, he stopped me with a hand on my arm.
"Can we just eat in here tonight, together? The dining room seems so… stiff and formal somehow. And… I'd rather that you didn't have to serve me, tonight."
"Certainly, sir," I said, touched. The kitchen-light cast a soft glow, and we ate together, our knees touching under the table as we spoke softly of unimportant matters, neither of us willing to disturb the atmosphere of peace which had settled over the room.
When we made love that night, it was tender and passionate. Without words, I tried to express my depth of feeling for him, and my sorrow over his disheartening experiences. I fear that my guilt over my role in his unpleasant experiences of the day motivated an unaccustomed ardor on my part. I was concerned that he would notice that something was amiss, but he merely accepted my fervent attentions with the same uninhibited and innocent joy that he always brings to our intimate relations.
As I held him in my arms afterwards, he seemed to revive somewhat. "Jeeves, I feel worlds better. If I could bottle and sell you door-to-door, I would make a bally fortune."
"A moving tribute, sir," I said dryly.
"Well deserved, Jeeves," he assured me. "I shall sally forth tomorrow with renewed enthusiasm. You have rejuvenated me completely."
"I am glad to hear it, sir," I said, my heart sinking. I had hoped that a small taste of the workaday world would have been enough to dissuade him from his course, but I had underestimated his natural optimism. I could not bear to see him come home another day worn down and dejected, and I had no wish to endure an endless string of days without his company. It was time to employ stronger measures. I considered several possible actions as he drifted off to sleep in my arms.
The following morning, Mr Wooster rose at eight and had left the flat by nine, whistling a merry tune and carrying his case full of tonic. I had, of course, risen far earlier than he, and had already carried out my preparations. After completing my morning chores, I left the flat to put my plans into motion.
First, I deposited at Sir Roderick Glossop's office in Harley Street several letters purporting to be from dissatisfied customers of Glossop's Pick-U-Up, threatening him with legal action for making false claims about the efficacy of the tonic. I also left a parcel containing a bottle of the tonic and a note ostensibly from Mr Pulvermacher, thanking Sir Roderick for giving his nephew Mr Hildebrand Glossop permission to use Sir Roderick's name and image to endorse the product.
This task completed, I made discreet inquiries with several persons of my acquaintance, circulating Mr Pulvermacher's name and description. Within a few hours I had received a message from an old colleague, a Mr Richard Armstrong, who was a valet in the employ of a well-known London financier. He invited me to meet him at a local establishment for tea, and I left directly to make the rendezvous.
Richard Armstrong was a distinguished elderly person, a consummate gentleman's personal gentleman who had been a friend and mentor to me for many years. It was pleasant to see him again, even under these circumstances. I asked after his grandchildren, and he asked after my nieces and nephews. After completing the necessary small talk, I brought the conversation around to the matter which we had met to discuss.
"I understand that you have information concerning the man Pulvermacher?" I asked.
"Yes, quite, although he wasn't calling himself Pulvermacher when I knew him," he said.
"May I enquire as to the circumstances?"
"Yes, Reginald, you may, although, of course, discretion is essential."
"Certainly," I concurred.
"My employer was taken in by a dastardly scheme perpetrated by this swindler, who was at the time calling himself William Ferguson. The details are unimportant, but suffice it to say that my employer lost a great deal of money."
"And, of course, the authorities were never notified," I said.
"Of course not. Can you imagine the field day the press would have had with that story? 'Well-Known Financier Caught Out by Con-Man' or some such. No, he wouldn't have heard of calling the police. The loss of face would have been much worse than the loss of money."
"I understand," I said. "Still, this criminal must be known to police if he has been at his schemes for any length of time."
"I imagine so, although I can equally imagine that very few of his victims would be willing to testify against him," he said.
"For my purposes, he need not stand trial or be convicted; I believe it shall suffice for the man to be arrested."
"Well, in that case, I'm certain that the police have been looking for him and that they would be most interested in any information you could provide."
At this point the conversation turned to other matters, and we parted with promises to meet again soon. I returned to the flat and penned an anonymous letter with the swindler's description and the two aliases that I knew of, along with a summary of his recent activities and his probable whereabouts that afternoon, and had it dispatched to the police station.
Early in the evening, I was tidying up the flat when Mr Wooster burst through the door in a state of agitation. I relieved him of his coat, hat, and leather case and he sank onto the sofa.
"I say, Jeeves," he began and then halted. "I say. It's the most rummy thing!"
"Yes, Jeeves. I was just meeting up with old Gilbert at the Drones to divvy up our take for the day – not very much, I'm afraid, I hadn't had much luck – when what do you suppose should happen?"
"I'm sure I don't know, sir."
"Well, I'll tell you, Jeeves. The police burst in, guns practically blazing, and dragged the fellow off in chains! Apparently the man's a wanted criminal! Who would have imagined it?"
"Who, indeed, sir," I said significantly. He shot me a look of mild vexation, but continued.
"That isn't all, Jeeves. Tuppy hadn't showed up for our meeting, so I toddled round to his place to tell him what had happened, and what do you think I found?"
"I should be most interested to know, sir."
"Sir Roderick was there, reading poor Tuppy the riot act for daring to use his photograph on the tonic bottles. The nerve of some people, honestly, Jeeves!"
"Most distressing, sir."
"Well, Sir Roderick stormed off in a state of apoplexy, but not before he told Tuppy that if he knew what was good for him, not another bottle of that deuced tonic had better make its way into the hands of the unsuspecting public."
"That is bad news, sir."
"Well, yes, Jeeves, it rather is. I told Tuppy what had happened to Pulvermacher, and we both agree that there's nothing to be done. The deal is off completely, and we'll just have to write off our losses."
"I am sorry to hear that, sir."
"Yes, well, I suppose it can't be helped. But who could have predicted it? Just one of life's vici-… vicissi-… What's the word I want, Jeeves?"
"Yes, Jeeves, exactly. One of those."
"Well, I consider myself to have had a rather lucky escape. Could have been worse, what? At least I didn't get bunged into chokey along with the fellow. Must have been lady luck smiling on me, eh, Jeeves?"
"Something of the sort, sir."
The rest of the evening passed pleasantly enough; Mr Wooster seemed somewhat bemused and a bit disappointed, but did not appear overly demoralized at the end of his business venture. All the same, he was distracted, his thoughts seeming to be miles away. When I interrupted his reverie by clearing my throat loudly after the third time I had asked him if he wanted anything further, he gave a guilty start and flushed deeply.
"No, Jeeves, that'll be all for the night. I'm feeling rather tired; I think I'll just go along to bed now if you don't mind terribly."
I helped him prepare for bed, giving him a lingering kiss before I left the room and extinguished the lights. I read for an hour or two before retiring myself, joining him in his chambers.
The next morning dawned bright and clear, and I rejoiced in the return to our usual routine. I brought him his tea just before he awoke in the late morning, and he sat up in bed with a yawn and a luxuriant stretch.
"Good morning, Jeeves," he said, pulling me down for a brief kiss as I deposited the tea-tray across his lap. "Looks like a beautiful day, what?"
"Indeed, sir," I said warmly.
"I think I shall go out for a walk after breakfast. I fancy heading over to my tailor's to see what's new this season." He sounded slightly embarrassed as he said this, though I could not fathom why.
"An excellent idea, sir," I said. "I understand that pinstripes are particularly in vogue this year; perhaps you could order a new dove-grey suit with a subtle pinstripe. I believe the effect would be most becoming."
"Er, yes, Jeeves, perhaps. I'll just see what's available, eh?"
"Very good, sir."
After Mr Wooster had dressed and breakfasted, I had several errands to complete, and I left him at the piano, playing a sprightly tune. After my errands, I had lunch and a drink at the Junior Ganymede Club and enjoyed a game of chess with an acquaintance there. It was late afternoon when I finally returned home.
The sight that met my eyes when I opened the door to the flat is one that I shall not soon forget. Indeed, I shudder to think of it now. Mr Wooster was standing in the entryway, apparently having come to meet me as I entered the flat. He was dressed head to toe in what one might euphemistically term "Western wear," the style of apparel of the American cowboy, as imagined by a British tailor who had been to the cinema one too many times. I closed my eyes briefly, hoping that I had merely imagined the spectacle before me. I reopened my eyes; Mr Wooster's appearance was unchanged. This could only have been a deliberate provocation on the part of my employer.
I allowed my eyes to drift slowly down his person, taking in each of the hideous details of his costume, from the white "10-gallon" hat to the red flannel shirt bedecked with satin fringe. My gaze was arrested when I reached his midsection. Encircling that slender, elegant waist was the most grotesquely ostentatious belt I had ever seen.
I forced my eyes to continue downward, noting the overly snug denim trousers and tooled leather boots. Soon, though, my vision was compelled to return to that belt. It was a monstrosity. The tooling on the leather matched that of the boots, and it had a brass buckle the size of a man's fist, in the shape of… I peered more closely… yes, it was in the shape of a buffalo's head.
I kept my face expressionless with an effort. He had to be aware of my probable reaction to the entire ensemble, and to that item in particular. I had warned him about the consequences of purchasing clothing inappropriate for a gentleman of his station. But had he considered the implications of that particular article, and the use to which it could be put? I searched his face. His blue eyes were wide and guileless, but there was a spot of colour on each of his cheeks. I allowed my eyes to drop back down to that horrendous buckle. As I stared at the thing for some time in silence, I noticed Mr Wooster's burgeoning physical reaction. A dangerous excitement began to grow in me as I allowed myself to believe that he had purchased and worn this attire deliberately as a way of provoking my passions.
"What do you think, Jeeves? Rather dashing, what? I certainly made a hit at the Drones," he said, a bit breathlessly.
"Am I to understand, sir, that you have you been wearing these garments in public?" I asked, keeping my voice perfectly level.
He swallowed hard. "Well, yes, Jeeves. Why? Don't you like them?"
I narrowed my eyes slightly. In lieu of answering immediately, I closed the door to the flat and stepped past him, brushing my body against his as I did so. His mouth dropped open and he gave a small gasp at the contact.
I set down my parcels and turned to him. "No, sir, I do not," I said with dangerous calm.
"Well, Jeeves, what do you intend to do about it?" he asked, face flushed but eyes intent on me.
"I shall ask you to retire to the master bedroom at once and remove those unsuitable vestments."
"Well, I suppose if you insist, Jeeves," he said with feigned reluctance.
"I do, sir," I said.
"Right-ho, then," he said, heading towards the bedroom at a flatteringly hasty pace. I followed a bit more slowly, my mind reeling with the implications.
When I reached the bedroom I found that he had already removed the hat and dropped it on the floor. As I watched, he unbuttoned his shirt, pulling it off and dropping it by the hat. Next, he unbuckled his belt with slightly shaking hands and pulled it free of the loops of the denim trousers. Then he stepped over to me and pressed it into my hands. I looked into his eyes as I took it, and the trust I saw there humbled me. He seemed unable to speak, and although I knew that he would not be able to articulate what he wanted, I understood him perfectly.
I took the belt and stepped back, motioning for him to continue disrobing. He sat on the edge of the bed and removed his boots and socks, then his trousers, and finally stood before me in his undergarments.
"What's wrong, Jeeves?" he asked, sounding slightly nervous. "You haven't said hardly anything since you got back. Is, er, everything all right?"
"Much better, sir," I said reassuringly, "now that you have removed those dreadful garments. Remove the rest of your clothing, please, sir."
He stripped off his undergarments, adding them to the pile on the floor. He shot me a slightly daring look as he dropped the last item, knowing full well how much I disapproved of such untidiness. Nevertheless, I ignored this provocation for the moment and slowly looked him up and down, observing his unmistakable state of arousal. I folded the belt in my hands so that it was doubled up, and his erection twitched noticeably. My own arousal was equally insistent by now, but I ignored it for the moment.
"Aren't you going to get undressed too, Jeeves?" he asked hopefully.
"No, sir," I said. Holding the doubled-up belt in one hand, I used the other to pull him close to me and I kissed him deeply. His arms came around me and for some time we hungrily explored each other's mouths. I prolonged the kiss, savouring the anticipation of this moment. Finally I pulled back, turned him around, and gave him a gentle push between his shoulder blades. He eagerly went to the bed, climbing on top of the bedding and settling himself on his hands and knees. I was momentarily stunned into immobility by the spectacle.
I had had secret, shameful fantasies of seeing my employer thus, kneeling before me, waiting for the stroke of a lash from my hand, but never in my wildest imaginings had I actually believed that I would be able to act on those fantasies, or that he would so willingly initiate such contact.
He turned his head to look at me, a small, nervous smile on his lips, his face flushed, and his eyes needy. I raised the hand that held the belt, and he turned his face resolutely forward. Unsure of how far he wanted to take this, and concerned that my strength would be too much, I swung the belt lightly and it impacted against his buttocks with a snap. He gasped softly, and I repeated my action. This time he pushed back eagerly into the stroke. I swung the belt again, with more force, and a loud crack echoed through the room. A stripe on his pale flesh momentarily became even paler, then coloured an angry red. I was struck by the sight, and paused for a moment, reaching out to caress the mark gently with my finger. He let out a low moan. I paused once again, uncertain whether he wished me to continue. He turned his head to look at me once more. "Jeeves, please…" he said, his voice heavy with longing. Mirabile dictu, it seemed that he wanted this as much as I did.
I let go of my inhibitions. I swung the belt again and again, raising red marks all across the tempting landscape of thighs and buttocks displayed before me. I could see his scrotum hanging between his slightly parted legs, and I angled one of my lighter blows to fall on that most sensitive flesh, causing him to cry out and falter forward. I was painfully aroused and urgently wanted to find release, but I took my time, reveling in every crack of the belt against his flesh, the sharp scent of fresh leather filling the air. He rewarded me with his cries of mingled pain and ecstasy, interspersed from time to time with a breathed "Yes, Jeeves, yes," and I knew that he felt as deeply connected to me in that moment as I did to him.
Finally, I lowered my arm. At this point I was nearly wild with desire, more frenzied than I had ever felt before. I felt myself on the knife-edge of losing control utterly. I shed my clothes quickly and prepared myself with oil from the bottle I keep in the wardrobe. He did not turn around, but remained still, with his head hanging between arms and his flanks heaving.
I stepped forward and placed myself at his entrance. I allowed him a mere moment to prepare for me, then in one powerful motion I forced my way past the tight ring of muscle at his opening and buried myself to the hilt in the waiting heat and tightness beyond. He gave a cry that was half shout and half sob, and fell forward, collapsing onto his elbows. This change of angle caused him to tighten around me and I groaned, the feel of him incredible. I grasped his hips and took my pleasure from him greedily, without regard for his need for release. Each of my thrusts wrung from him a small, surprised exclamation, and he repeated "Oh!– Oh!– Oh!–" as I drove into him mercilessly again and again.
In a matter of moments I reached the peak, exploding into him so forcefully that my vision dimmed for a moment. I tightened my fingers brutally on his hips to steady myself, drawing a whimper from him. For a few long moments I remained inside of him, loosening my fingers and then stroking my hands down his sides and back, which were covered in a light sheen of sweat. Finally, I pulled out slowly, noting his shudder and observing with deep satisfaction the angry red welts which covered his backside and thighs.
In his innocent and naïve sensuality, my cherished employer had taken us further than I ever would have dared to ask him to go, and I loved him all the more for it. Without further hesitation, I joined him on the bed, pulling him forward into my arms. I cradled him against me, wiping away the tear marks I found on his cheeks and kissing him tenderly, again and again. He was still hard and wanting, and I would satisfy him shortly, but I took this moment first to comfort him and reassure myself that he was well. He smiled up at me with simple relief and gratitude, and I was shaken by his absolute acceptance of me, of himself, and of this situation.
Looking at him in this moment, I felt compelled to give something to Mr Wooster which I had never willingly bestowed upon any other person. Early in my career, I had been on the receiving end of unwelcome attentions which resulted in… less than pleasant experiences. It is a subject on which I do not often dwell.
Nevertheless, I had observed Mr Wooster's desire for me. Although I satisfied him with my mouth and my hands, and the press of my body against his, still I knew that he wished for more. How could he not? He was, after all, a young, virile man, and it was only natural for him to want to possess me fully, as I had possessed him.
I knew that, due to his natural reticence about such matters, and his strict sense of personal honour, he would never press me for this, nor even raise the subject. For my part, I had not believed that I would be able to willingly surrender in that way to anyone, even my beloved employer. However, in this moment, recalling how innocently and eagerly he had come to me with his need for chastisement, which so perfectly matched my own deep desire to chastise him, the decision was effortless.
Reaching over his body, I retrieved the bottle of oil from where, in my haste, I had dropped it on the bed earlier. Laying him back on the bed, I kissed him and instructed him to lie still. He gave a contented murmur and did as I asked, wincing slightly when his tender and bruised backside made contact with the sheets.
"Are you all right, sir?" I asked.
"Oh, yes, Jeeves, fine," he said, giving a slight wriggle against the sheets. "Now, er, if you don't mind…" he trailed off hopefully.
"Yes, sir," I said.
Kneeling next to him, I uncapped the bottle and poured a quantity of oil into my hand. After spreading it around to coat my fingers, I set the bottle aside. Then I reached back and began to prepare for him, slowly working one, then two, then finally three fingers into myself. I forced myself to relax as I worked my fingers, stretching my passage so that I could accommodate him.
He merely watched me at first, looking somewhat puzzled. I could see the exact moment when he realized what I had in mind. His entire body shuddered, his erection jerked, and he drew a sharp breath, his eyes widening and pupils dilating. I used the oil remaining on my hands to lubricate his hardness, my touch causing his body to bow upwards into my grasp as he cried out softly.
I straddled Mr Wooster's body, holding still for a moment above him. I placed the tip of his long, slender length at my entrance and, locking my eyes with his, began to lower myself onto him. He let out a low, drawn-out keening sound, different than any I had heard him make before. As if he felt compelled to touch me, he raised his hands and settled them on my legs, clutching at my thighs and digging his short nails into the flesh.
As I lowered myself onto him, I fought to stay relaxed, to accept him into me. I had never thought to allow my body to be invaded in such a way again, but I would bear this pain and more for my master. As I settled further onto his length, he looked at me in undisguised wonder.
Finally, I held him fully within me. I felt stretched almost beyond bearing. For a long moment I stayed motionless, still looking into his eyes as he gazed into mine. "Jeeves…" he breathed, helplessly.
"Sir…" I managed, equally overcome.
I began to move slowly, gingerly, my thighs flexing under his hands as I raised and lowered myself over his body. Because I had already taken my own satisfaction, I could focus completely on his sensations, on his pleasure. The look on his face as I moved over him was one of indescribable rapture. I ignored my own discomfort and began to increase my speed as I noted his growing urgency. His hips began to rock upwards to meet my downward thrusts and desperate cries fell from his lips. I raised my hands to his chest and began stroking down his torso, running my fingernails lightly over his nipples as our tempo increased further.
Suddenly, the tip of his length touched a particular spot deep inside of me, causing a sudden and unexpected burst of ecstasy to course though me. I gave a surprised shout and clenched around him. My sudden contraction triggered his climax and he bucked up into me wildly, a piercing cry ripped from his throat as I felt him pulsing inside of me, his warm seed flooding into my depths.
I collapsed onto his chest, utterly undone. His arms came up around me and he stroked his hands soothingly along my back for several minutes, his breath warm against my ear. "Thank you, Jeeves," he whispered finally. "I love you."
My throat felt thick and I was quite unable to respond, but he didn't seem to mind, continuing his petting motions along my back.
Finally, I began to be concerned that I would cause him discomfort, lying on top of him in such a way. As I pulled myself off of him, we both shuddered, and he clutched at my arms, drawing me down onto the bed next to him. We lay side by side in bed, gazing into each other's eyes for an unknowable interval.
Eventually I rose from the bed and went into the bathroom, moving somewhat gingerly. I returned to the bedroom and cleaned us both with a damp cloth, a ritual which had become part of our intimacy. This service performed, I returned to bed and drew him into my arms. I felt somewhat recovered, and when he was once again safely ensconced in my embrace, I murmured "I love you, too, sir."
He sighed contentedly and settled into my arms. "I didn't really wear that outfit to the Drones, you know, Jeeves. I just brought it here from my tailor's wrapped up in parcel paper and then put it on when I got home."
"I am relieved to hear it, sir," I said, kissing the curve of his cheek.
"And I ordered a grey pinstripe suit while I was there."
"Thank you, sir."
He heaved another small sigh. "I just wanted you to be proud of me, Jeeves," he said in a slightly forlorn voice.
Distracted by his cheekbone under my lips, I replied absentmindedly. "Proud, sir?"
"Yes, Jeeves. I thought getting a job would make you proud. But I only managed to bungle it up as usual. I'm hopeless, Jeeves."
I pulled back slightly and, tipping his face toward mine with my finger under his chin, I gazed intently into his eyes.
"I fain would put my hands about thy face,/Thou with thy thoughts, who art another Spring,/And draw thee to me like a mournful child./Thou lookest on me from another place;/I touch not this day's secret, nor the thing/That in the silence makes thy sweet eyes wild," I quoted.
"Er, I'm afraid I don't quite follow, Jeeves."
I looked at him fondly. "I mean, sir, that you are too fine and rare for the toils of mere mortals. You are possessed of a joyful, effervescent nature, and it pains me to see you suffering. And, sir, I am always proud of you. As the full moon shining there/To the sun that lighteth her/Am I unto thee for ever,/O my secret glory-giver!"
He smiled at me, seemingly reassured. Then his face fell again. "But, Jeeves, I made you miss your fishing trip. Well, we can go to America now, but it's too late for the salmon season, what?"
"I fancy, sir, that if we leave in two days, we will arrive in sufficient time for the end of the salmon run."
"But, Jeeves, how will we get tickets at this late date? And make arrangements for lodging in America, and all that?"
I coughed gently. "I have already made all of the necessary reservations, sir," I informed him.
"Jeeves, you are a marvel. I know we were only planning to stay for two weeks, but why don't we make it three? You deserve it, old thing."
"Thank you, sir," I said, clearing my throat. "I have taken the liberty of arranging a four-week stay in America."
"Fine, Jeeves, fine," he said magnanimously. "Now, what do you suppose we ought to do with those things?" he asked, gesturing at the pile of garments on the floor.
"I shall dispose of them with all due haste, sir," I said severely. "With the exception of the belt, which I shall keep with your chartreuse tie."
"Jolly good," he said with a happy shiver. Then he drew me down into his arms once more and all thoughts of America, and the appalling attire inspired by that country, were dismissed from our minds in favour of much more pleasant pursuits.
Feel like a little PWP?
Or, on to the full-length sequel?
ETA: After I wrote and posted this, zekkass posted on indeedsir a gorgeous photo of cowboy!Bertie and irked!Jeeves. It was too appropriate & perfect to resist, so I'm putting a linky here. Thanks, ennui_blue_lite, for the suggestion!