Amidst the backdrop of Napoleonic War raging across Europe, soldiers seek distraction from the horrors of the battle field. Major Grant is an officer of the British Army serving under Wellington in France. An officer, a gentleman and a connoisseur of female bottoms, Major Grant finds himself unusually captivated by a mysterious woman…..
On the 27th of December, just after breakfast, a courier of the regiment arrived with orders instructing me to report in London before the end of the year. The courier, who had travelled by horse throughout the night, could have not been more than 17 years of age. I instructed him to make his way to the kitchen and have cook prepare him breakfast and allocate him a cot to regain his strength. In truth I had greater concern for his horse than he, as my wife’s father had a limited stable and would most certainly not allow a trade for a tired army mount.
I found my wife playing with the children in the garden. It was a clear crisp day after the snowfall of the night before and the girls had made a large snowman fashioned in the shape of a soldier. About his head he wore a coal scuttle that resembled a Shako helmet and for a rifle the handle of a broom long since broken. At his side a piece of picket fence for a sword that was secured by an old red scarf. Judging by the children’s faces he looked the perfect snowman. I sat beside my wife and explained the arrival of the courier. She did not ask any questions beyond that of my expected duties in London, despite knowing that I may soon be marching in the direction of Belgium. Her lack of interest in my business still failed to surprise me. Despite marrying her with three small children after the death of her husband, she never found it in heart to love me. I can only assume that she blamed me for her husband’s death, although our only previous connection was a military uniform. Our romance had been brief and exciting. She found to like pain and I to give it. In truth she likely buried her grief in being tied down and spanked hard. She seem to adore being explored in every way possible, however, within a year she became cold and distant. The children stopped asking after their natural father and I replaced him. She, however, could not find that within her. Prior to speaking with her, I had made a pact with myself that I should leave for London that very day. I knew the London Coach at midday would leave from the local Inn even in the middle of winter. My Christmas spirit had been short lived and my wife’s disagreeable mood sealed the day. The children, despite their age knew why I had to leave and asked if they could write; As always I agreed and said I would bring them a Frenchman’s head. This always made the children laugh for I had been fighting the French longer that any of them had been alive. They may not have laughed so if they knew how often I have been able to produce this promised prize in grizzly reality.
I travelled alone until we reached the village of Rickmansworth, where a small coach station provided a change of horses. Whilst attempting to regain some feeling in my legs I saw as to whom would be joining me on the last stage of the journey to London. It was none other than Dr.Teak, my fellow guest at the recent Coronation Dinner. He took my hand firmly and wished me festive greetings. He was in good cheer and keen to learn of my movements since our last meeting. We rejoined the coach and made ourselves comfortable by throwing a number of large rugs about us to ward off the cold that now the evening air had chilled. Our comfort was greatly increased when Dr.Teak produced a small hamper that he said had been given to him by the patient he had just come from. I expressed my surprise that he should be so far from London at Christmas on a professional call. He laughed and told me to clam myself and thanked me for my concern which was not necessary, as his patient was none other than his elderly mother with whom he had spent Christmas. I congratulated him on being a first class son, to which he agreed!
The conversation swayed from one direction to another, from rumours of war to the thoughts of a warm summer. To my surprise and with a chicken leg in hand, he asked me if I recalled a particular lady who had shared our table at Lord Grantham’s estate. He described her in the most basic of terms but at once I knew it to be Mrs. Black. I acknowledged his enquiry by saying that I did indeed remember the lady and to confirm her identity I remarked, half in question, that she was unaccompanied on that very evening? The Doctor was quite solemn in his answer when he said that she quite often attended functions alone, as her husband was the headmaster of large school in the country. The doctor believed that she and the children lived in their house outside of London to allow for equal distance between the city and the school. The doctor said no more about her for some five minutes and merely gazed from the window of the carriage. My thirst for knowledge of this beauty was overwhelming and gaining the composure of a politely interested companion I said, “You were saying Doctor, about the lady at dinner?” He strangely over apologised for his loss of concentration and explained that the lady had been asked by the ‘Silver Stick’ to maintain a school within the Guards Barracks in London. In truth the lady had made the request to Lord Grantham, who was the Honoury Colonel to the Brigade of Guards. He in turn spoke with the Silver Stick who thought the idea first class. I commented that this was a noble gesture indeed on her part, to which the good doctor agreed adding one caveat to this perfect arrangement. He said,
“Such a distance can only add strain to one’s emotions in marriage.”
I replied, possibly too quickly, that I too had such a relationship with my wife what with being a soldier of the line. The doctor looked at me as if under medical examination and over the top of glasses that balanced on his large nose and with a thin smile said, “Indeed.”