The Ghost of Robert Bruce
By John Yager
The following story is a work of erotic fiction dealing with relationships between consenting adults. If such stories are not to your liking or if you are not of legal age to read such stories in your jurisdiction, please exit now.
This is a work of fiction and in no way draws on the lives of any specific person or persons. Any similarity to actual persons or events is entirely coincidental. This work is copyrighted by the author and may not be reproduced in any form without the specific written permission of the author. It is assigned to the Nifty Archives under the terms of their submission agreement and may not be copied or archived on any other site without the written permission of the author.
Again, special thanks to Andrew for proof reading and for giving me the benefit of his criticism and advice. Andrew, your assistance is most appreciated. Any mistakes remain my own.
I also want to express thanks to Mac, who gave me the idea for this story, albeit in a rather different form.
This story represents a rather dramatic change from other stories I have posted on NIFTY and I will certainly hope to hear from readers with your reactions.
If you wish to receive e-mail notification of subsequent posting, please let me know by sending your request to the e-mail address below.
I had never felt pain like that before. Not that it was so bad or so intense, but it was certainly different from anything I'd ever experienced. I'd had my shoulder dislocated once during a football match in college and that was a lot worse. This was just different. Robert had been gentle, as gentle as the procedure allowed, and I had given my consent. He had insisted that we shower together and he had washed me with incredible care. When we finished he had reached into the bag he had brought with us into the bathroom and pulled out an old fashioned rubber enema bulb. I guess I had known what was coming, but that had been my first conformation that my suspicions were correct.
"Do you want me to do that for you, or would you rather do it yourself?" he asked in an almost apologetic tone.
"It seems rather undignified for you to have to do it. I guess I should take care of it."
"No, I want to, if you'll allow me."
He ran warm soapy water into the wash basin and then filled the bulb, compressing it, submerging the black rubber tip so it pulled the warm solution up into the bulb as he released it. I had remained in the shower and he reentered the stall and positioned himself behind me.
"Put your hands against the wall and bend over as far as you can."
I did as he said and felt his hand spreading the cheeks of my buttocks as one finger found the tight rosebud of my ass.
"Take a deep breath and let it out slowly as I push this in. I put come lubricant on the tip so it should go in easily."
I again obeyed his instructions and felt the hard tip slide into me. I remembered having enemas a few times when I was a kid, and how I had hated them. I hated the discomfort and the sense of being invaded. But most of all, I hated the indignity of my mother or father having to do such a thing. With Robert doing it, the discomfort was still there, but the indignity was gone. In fact, I found it rather arousing.
"Keep your ass clamped tight," he said. "When I pull it out I want you to keep the soapy water in as long as you can."
I clamped down hard and held on for all I was worth.
Robert stayed with me, stroking my back and shoulders and muttering encouragement until I could stand it no longer.
"Got to go," I said and pushed by him to the WC.
Robert kept his distance as I emptied my bowels. I was a little shaky as I came back to him. "What now?" I asked.
"We do it again." He had already refilled the bulb and I obediently reassumed the position, leaning against the shower wall with my legs spread and my butt thrust out for him to do with as he wished.
All told, he filled me three times. By then I could feel a little tremor in my lower back and legs and was very glad when Robert said we could stop. "Let's lie down together for a few minutes so you can rest." He took an extra towel and spread it on the bed for me to lie on. Then lying beside me, he stroked my chest and kissed me. When he put one hand under my legs and drew them up, I yielded to him completely, lifting my legs and exposing my newly cleaned ass to his touch. He stroked my crack, spreading some soothing cream over it, then pressed a single well lubricated finger into me. He pressed in far further than he had ever been able to go before. I groaned as his finger explored my nether gate. He twisted his finger, pushing in a little and then pulling out, until the interior walls of my ass were coated with the lotion he applied.
Robert rolled over and reached down beside the bed where he had placed his bag. "Close your eyes," he said. "I don't want you looking." I did as he said.
Some time went by as he continued to work a second and then a third finger into my ass. I still lay with my legs raised, waiting for what would come next.
Eventually Robert knelt between my legs and lifted them until they were against my chest. "Can you hold your legs up like that?"
I did so.
I again felt his fingers at my ass, testing, pressing in a bit. Then his fingers were withdrawn and I felt a blunter pressure, a hard, unyielding pressure. Robert was lying beside me and from his position, I knew that what I felt was not his cock, which gave me some reassurance.
"Take a very deep breath and hold it," he said. With my eyes still closed, I obeyed. The pressure increased and with it a growing pain. At first the pain was dull and bearable, but it quickly increased and became sharp. "Now breathe out very slowly," Robert whispered and I realized his lips were very close to mine.
My ass was throbbing now, feeling as if it might be ripped at any moment. Then there was the sensation of intense heat, as if some burning shaft was being rammed into me. A moment later the sensation changed again and I felt as if I was going to explode, as if some huge presence had been forced into my bowels and I could not resist.
Quite suddenly, the sensations changed again. There was a release, as if the worst was over and the pain began to subside. The pressure was still there, even greater perhaps, but it was as if my body had accepted it. Robert was leaning over me and suddenly I felt his lips on mine.
When he drew away he whispered, "just rest. I'll be here by you."
"What is it, Robert? Tell me what you put in me."
"It's a butt plug, an ass stretcher, really."
"Why didn't you want me to see it."
"I didn't want to frighten you."
"Is it that big?"
"It is rather large."
"How long will you leave it in me?"
"All night tonight and all day tomorrow. I'll take it out tomorrow evening."
"Then I fuck you."
After we'd rested a while, lying naked on my bed, Robert left me and puttered in the kitchen getting our now late supper served. He insisted I only wear a dressing gown and he did the same. As we ate, his robe fell open revealing his chiseled chest. I found that I was aroused, wanting him.
"I have tomorrow planned out," he told me as we finished the rather elegant meal. "I think it would be best if we alternated periods of walking with periods of sitting, to maximize the benefit of your new toy. It's expected to be a rather cool but bright day, so I am taking you to Kew Gardens. Have you been there?"
"No, I kept meaning to go last summer."
"Well, the actual gardens aren't so fine this time of year, but the tropical houses are lovely and there aren't so many people about. It is rather a long way, but I want us to take the underground. The more you move about the better that thing will work and the motion and rocking of the trains will give you some extra benefit. Then we can take a nice stroll once we're there."
"This thing you've put in me, it won't leave my ass open and incontinent will it?"
"Oh, no. I'd certainly not do that to you. The muscles will still close down quite well. They'll just have the ability to stretch open more than before."
"Yes. I'll tell you something, just between us, all right?"
"I've had bigger in me than the one you have in you right now." As he finished the remark he sipped his coffee with a rather elegant flourish, as if it was the most ordinary statement in the world.
"But why, Robert?"
"Well, when I was about seventeen, I had a lover, an older man, who was very much into that kind of thing. I must say, I learned to enjoy it myself."
"That kind of thing?"
"Well, yes, you know."
"I guess I don't."
"Well, my lover was a man in his late thirties, a peer, actually. He introduced me to, what is it you Yanks call it? The Leather Scene I think."
"You mean S and M, rough sex?"
"Yes, all that. There are clubs here in London, you know, some rather famous ones, if you know whom to ask."
"Do you still see the man who introduced you to all that?"
"No, he began spending most of his time in the States a few years ago and I haven't seem much of him since. Actually, I doubt if he'd have any interest in me now, he rather preferred boys, young men."
"What is he doing in the States?"
"Films, actually, very specialized pornographic films."
I was silent, wondering if I wanted to know more.
"Don't worry about me leading you too far astray," he went on. "What we are doing is just to help you accommodate me. We won't take it any further. That is, unless you want to, of course."
I was suddenly finding it was difficult to sit still. The device in my ass was being pressed in further by my weight on it, which had at first felt rather odd. Then it became somewhat painful, and then very arousing. Now, all I felt was its huge presence and I needed to get up and move about.
Robert had cleared the table and actually straightened up in the kitchen, not allowing me to help. As he came back into the lounge, he saw my restlessness.
"Is it bothering you?"
"Tell me how it feels."
"Well, I feel so full. I don't know how to describe it."
Robert went to the large windows which looked out into the street. He pulled the drapes even more securely. As he turned back to face me he asked, "can we light the fire."
"Certainly. Are you cool."
"Not really, it would just be cozy."
I started toward the open fireplace which had been converted from a coal grate to a gas log. I found matches on the mantel and stooped down to open the gas valve and light the flame. As I did so, I felt a sudden, almost painful sensation as the plug was forced to move in me as I stooped.
Robert saw my look of surprise and smiled.
"Maybe I should have you do sit-ups."
"That would be rather cruel."
"Not really, it all helps." He smiled as he came over to me. "Actually, it sounds quite decadent. You, nude I think, lying on the carpet, doing sit-ups as your toy moves and stretches your ass, making you more and more open, more and more able to take me, to take my cock."
His words had become a drone and I found that I was fully erect, tenting the front of my robe. Robert embraced me, running hands under my robe, exploring my chest, moving down to find the sash and untie it. He slipped the robe off my shoulders and tossed it on a chair. I stood there naked, my cock pulsing against his equally hard body.
"Put your arms against the mantel and lean back."
I did as he said.
He knelt before me, running his warm hands over my stomach and down over my legs. My back was being toasted by the heat from the gas fire. He ran his hands around and fondled my buttocks, spreading then and then running his fingers over the T shaped handle of the plug. As he manipulated it, moving it in and out of me a little, his lips closed over my throbbing cock.
"Oh, Robert," I moaned.
He took me all the way in, lodging the head of my cock deep in his throat, and then began to pull off and press in again in rapid movements which brought me to the edge in no time at all. As he sucked my cock, he pressed the plug deeper into me, then released it, letting the pressure subside somewhat before pushing it back in again. I felt as if my ass was already being fucked. The heat from the gas log added another sensation, quickly bringing me to climax. I moaned and shot my seed deep into Robert's mouth. He held me, taking it all, and my body shuddered in response.
"Yes," Robert said as he let my now softening cock slip from his mouth, "you're coming along nicely."
The next day he kept me moving, as he said he would do. We went to Kew on the underground, walked for some distance, and then took the tube back to my area of central London. We had a late lunch and then returned to my flat, where Robert ran a very hot bath and insisted I soak with the plug still in place. I dozed a little in the tub and was a little disoriented when I woke. I lay naked on the bed, a light cover over me, and dozed again. Robert lay beside me, also nude, and gently massaged my chest and legs. At nine o'clock he rolled over to face me and said, his voice almost a whisper, "I think it's been long enough. Come on, we'll take a shower together."
We rose and went off to the bath, were Robert started the shower. When the water was warm we stepped in together, Robert ran a well lathered cloth over my chest and legs, worked shampoo into my hair and helped me rinse. "Turn around," he said when he was finished with my front. I did as he said, leaning forward against the tiled wall.
He worked soap into the crack of my ass and rotated the plug a little. "Take a deep breath," he said, "and hold it."
I again obeyed, guessing what came next. He told me to exhale, and as I did so, he began to withdraw the plug. There was a stretching sensation as the larger interior portion began to spread my ass. The stretching continued and I felt as if my ass was on fire. I groaned and Robert slowed down.
"No," I moaned, "don't stop, just pull it on out."
He continued to pull and I really felt as if I was a woman giving birth. The stretching sensation continued until the bulb passed through the channel of my ass, finally coming out with an audible pop. Then, once out, what I quickly noticed was the dreadful sense of emptiness which followed. I never dreamed that I'd miss it, but now that it was gone, I longed to have it back in me.
"I feel so empty, Robert." I moaned.
"Don't worry, Love, we'll soon take care of that."
He ran the soapy cloth over my back and down over my legs, passing over my ass without really washing it. Then returning, he spread the cheeks of my buttocks and worked soap into the crack. His slick fingers found the rosebud of my ass and pressed into it. One finger was followed by two and the by a third.
"Yes," I hissed as he began to fuck me with his closely bunched fingers. They formed a wedge which became wider as he pressed further in. "Yes, Robert, yes." I moaned. I was reduced to begging, like a bitch in heat, his bitch, wanting him in me, any part of him in me, fingers, hand, but most of all, his cock. "Yes, Robert, oh, god, yes!"
Without bothering to dry himself off, he stepped out to fill the rubber bulb he'd left on the vanity the night before. As he stepped back into the shower, I positioned my body, ready for him, knowing now what to expect. Once, twice, a third time, he cleaned me out, left me feeling even more empty than before. The third time, he used cold water, not warm, as cold as the tap could provide. When it shot into my bowels I clenched, feeling as if I'd been invaded by an icy storm. I groaned as the sensation moved up into my stomach, creating a sudden chill behind my breast bone, making my chest draw in as if my breath had been knocked out of me.
"Hold it, Love, keep it in you as long as you can."
After my third trip to the WC, he dried me off.
"Come on, Lover, we can do this better in bed." He dried me and then himself. I waited for him to finish like a child who could not move until told to, didn't even think of going on into the bedroom, getting into bed, my bed, until he led me in that direction, until he gave me permission to move. I was reduced to a state of absolute submission. Robert alone had what I needed, what I had to have. His body had become my narcotic. I had to have whatever he would give me of himself.
Robert put his hand on my shoulder and turned me toward the door. As we walked from the bathroom into my bedroom, he guided me. When we reached the big bed, he pushed me gently, letting me know what he wanted, how he wanted me to lie.
I scooted over to the center of the bed and lay on my back as his gestures and his few words had indicated. Without being told to spread my legs, I did so, exposing myself to him, pleading with him by my gestures alone that I wanted him, needed all of him, and wanted him now.
Robert sat on the side of bed and slowly dried his lower legs and feet. Hadn't he dried his legs before, in the bathroom? Did he need to do it again? Was he just torturing me with his slowness, with his slow, deliberate movements, his refusal to hurry when I needed him now?
Eventually he finished and turned toward me, one leg thrown up onto the bed. He looked down at my face and ran his eyes over my body, my wanton, begging body.
"Well, now," he said, as if he had just noticed I was there.
I reached for him, opening my arms to him. "Please, Robert, please."
"Yes, Love," he smiled, not a cruel smile, not even a teasing smile, just a friendly smile, as if he wanted to be given a proper invitation. "Tell me what you want."
"I want you in me, Robert, please."
"Tell me, Love, tell me what you want me to do."
"Oh, god, Robert, I want you to fuck me, please, please, just fuck me."
"I'm big, Love, you couldn't take my cock before. Remember how I tried?"
"Yes, but now I can take it, I must take it, Robert. I want it, Robert, now! I need it so much."
He rolled over so he was kneeling between my wide spread legs. My body was trembling in anticipation, the emptiness controlling me, driving me. He reached for the tube lubricant he'd put on the bedside table and squeezed a generous portion into the palm of his left hand. Then, forming the fingers of his right hand into a wedge as he'd done when he washed me in the shower, he rolled the frightening wedge in the lubricant, rolled it slowly, completely coating it. When he was finished, he wiped the excess from his left hand over his own belly, leaving it slick and shinny.
"Let's get your legs up on my shoulders," he said, and I quickly complied, exposing my most private parts to his scrutiny and his touch. His right hand moved quickly to my ass, probing with the longer fingers, twisting to spread the gel, preparing the way for the wider and wider wedge of his bunched fingers.
I groaned, wanting more, pushing up, trying to speed up the process, trying to drive more of his hand into me.
"Slow, Lover. Remember, I'm in charge here."
"Yes, I know, but please come in further. I want you in me, Robert."
"I know, Lover, just be patient." He continued to press in as he twisted his hand, rotating it, pressing in, reopening the channel of my ass. My body trembled, not with pain, but in welcome.
"Oh, Robert," I groaned, as wave of heat spread over me, starting with my ass but quickly moving in successive waves over my chest, causing my face to flush, even my legs to suddenly break out in beads of sweat.
He pressed further in and my vision began to blur. Robert became a tremulous, glowing form, still Robert, but as if he'd gone transparent, as if he had become one with air and light.
"I think you're ready now."
"Tell me again, Love, what do you want?"
I moaned. He knew what I wanted, he knew what I needed, demanded, what I had to have.
"I want you to fuck me, Robert." I tried to keep my voice steady but I wanted to scream. I tried to say it in a reasonable way, politely, earnestly. Inside I was in turmoil. I wanted to lash out at him, to pummel his chest, to demand that he come into me.
"You are sure, Love?"
"Yes, Robert, yes."
He adjusted his position between my legs and then in one slow, steady move, withdrew his clumped fingers from my ass. The emptiness immediately returned.
Robert reached for the tube again and spread a thick coating of the gel over his hard, pulsing cock. For the first time that evening, I looked down at it. He was huge! What had I committed myself to?
"The male organ of copulation," Noah Webster had told me when I'd looked up "penis" as a child. "Copulation," such a clinical word! "The male organ," Robert's organ, his penis, his hard, huge, throbbing, pulsing, cock. It was glistening with the gel he'd spread over it, and now it was ready to thrust into me, to pierce me, impale me, possess me.
"Yes, Robert, yes!"
He moved forward, positioning himself against me, my legs still arched up, resting on his powerful shoulders, his muscular chest rising over me. The blunt knob of his cock was against my ass. I could feel in just that light touch, the pulse of it, the pulse of his heart. He moved forward and I felt my body spread before his advance, felt myself open to him. Robert was leaning forward a little, his eyes looking down into mine, my own eyes wide in wonder. There was a smile, a slight smile on his beautiful lips. Robert is smiling at me, I thought; Robert loves me.
"Yes," I moaned, "yes, Robert, I love you so."
"I know, my love."
I felt a sudden jolt and knew that the head of his cock was now deep in me, not just fingers, spreading, stretching, but his cock, his penis, the male organ of copulation. It was in me, I had taken him. Robert and I were copulating! We were copulating, coupling, joining, joined, we were, Mr. Webster had said, "fused, made permanently one."
"Oh, god! Oh, Robert, I love you so."
"Yes," he said. "Yes, I know, I love you too."
He held very still, his beautiful body hovering over me, his lovely eyes locked on mine. We were suspended, floating, neither here nor there, neither one nor the other, just suspended in space and time. I had not known, I had not understood, but Robert was right; now he truly had possessed me.
Sometime later, seconds, a minute, I said the word he waited for, "yes."
He understood and moved forward into me, the length, the mass, the girth of him, moving into me, filling me, taking, claiming, making me completely his.
I felt lightheaded. I wondered if I had swooned.
"I'm in you, Lover," Robert whispered, "I'm completely in you now."
"Yes, yes, yes."
He again held still and time froze. He lowered his body onto mine, his chest pressing firmly against my chest, the rhythm of his heart beating against me until my own heart became synchronized with his.
"Yes," I said again and he began to move, his powerful body moving back, then forward, then back again. I lowered my legs so I could move against him, then as our passion grew, locked them around him, lest he escape.
I felt his body tighten, felt my own body lock, as if by some force that had been buried in me all along, but now came forth to hold me to my lover, my lover to me. We groaned together and I felt the mass of him increase, grow, swell in me.
"Yes," we said together as our passion overtook us like a rushing locomotive, passing through us, by us, leaving us hovering on the brink of some huge chasm. He erupted within me, searing the walls of my inter most self, branding me as his own. My own body jolted with repeated waves as I poured out the seed of my manhood into that locked space our bodies had made between us.
Gradually or breathing stilled, our hearts settled back into their normal rhythm. But for me, nothing, after that night, would ever be normal again. I knew my life had been forever changed, for ever retuned, redirected, by this man.
From that night on, I was Robert's. He possessed me. He could use me, take me, fill me as he pleased. I knew that without him my own life would end.
We were lovers for another twenty three months, and for that time, I never looked at another person with sexual interest, no other man, nor woman.
The weekend before Robert died, I had been at Heed. We had walked along the shores of the lochs and ridden horseback over the sparse hills. By then his family had come to accept me as one of their own. At night, after dinner and coffee and port, we went off to Robert's tower and made love.
I left on Sunday evening. Not wanting to waste any time I could spend with Robert, I had booked the late train, which would get me into London just at dawn on Monday. I changed into a business suit on the train before we arrived and went straight to my office with my bags. I was worn out, but knew I could make it through the day.
That evening, just after I'd gotten to my flat, Robert's brother called. I knew as soon as I heard his voice that it was bad.
When I hung up the phone I sat in the gloom of my lounge and words Robert and I had spoken two years before came back to me.
"I love your body. I want to possess it," he had said.
I said the only thing which came to mind, which was the truth. "You already have."
"No, not fully. Every atom of your being will be mine."
"Nothing left for me?"
"Nothing. Only my death will release you." His words still haunt me.
I returned to Scotland that night, making calls back to the bank in London the next day to explain my absence. Robert's family treated me as if I were one of them. In their own grief they reached out to me and I did all I could to reach out to them.
"There's really very little left to bury, you know," Thomas had said to me as we walked together to the family chapel on the grounds of Heed.
"I read the descriptions of the accident in the papers on the train up from London. They were pretty graphic."
"Mother is insisting that his body be entombed. He was the eighteenth Earl of Heed, you know.
"Yes, I know, although I could never think of him in that way."
"No, none of us could. `A free spirit,' that's what our father always called him."
The funeral was mercifully short, the old service for the Burial of the Dead. I spent three more days at Heed but slept in a little room on the first floor. I couldn't bear to sleep alone in Robert's room.
Over the next few years I gradually came to terms with my own loss. I visited Heed from time to time, more to see Robert's mother than any other member of the family. She aged quickly after Robert's death. The last few times I was there she spoke of Robert in such a strange way that I was not sure if she meant her son or her grandson, who was by then a beautiful and brilliant boy.
After so many years in London that I felt more English than American, I was asked to return to our corporate offices in New York. I had been back to the States often over the years, but the thought of living there filled me with dread.
From New York I was sent to Toronto and then to Atlanta. Then, three years ago, I was called back to the headquarters in New York as a corporate vice president. I had never married and never had a serious relationship after Robert's death, and had a reputation within the bank for having devoted myself entirely to my work.
It was there, back in New York, that I met Barbara. She caught my eye the first time I saw her. We had friends in common and began to date. Like me, she had never married and after knowing her for nearly a year, I asked her to be my wife. Barbara is the perfect corporate spouse, radiantly beautiful, but also intelligent and wise. I love her as I have not loved anyone since Robert, and could not want a better mate.
Then last spring, just as our life together seemed to have settled into a pleasant routine, I was asked to return to London as the head of our bank there. It was a significant advancement, very high honor, and a mark of real approval on the part of our directors, who make all appointments at that level.
"Go for a year or so," my closest friends on the board had said. "You need a little experience overseas at that level. Then we can bring you back here to even more prestigious things."
Barbara was pleased with the opportunity and within six weeks we had leased our apartment on Seventy-seventh and Park, and were settled into a lovely flat overlooking Eccleston Square.
Over the years I had kept in touch with Angela Bruce, who responded to our wedding announcement by sending a warm letter to Barbara and a lovely pair of antique Chinese vases. I feared that she had taken them from some dark cupboard at Heed without realizing their value. After our marriage, Barbara had taken over our Christmas cards, and through them she and Angela had begun a friendly and frequent correspondence.
It was therefore natural that Angela wanted us to visit Heed as soon after arriving in London as possible. The opportunity came in July, when I had been asked to speak at a banking and finance conference in Glasgow. We planned the trip so Barbara and I could go on to Fort William for a few days after my meetings ended. I insisted that we travel by rail. My memories of that trip were still vivid and I wanted Barbara to see the beauty of the English and Scottish country side.
We arrived at Fort William late in the afternoon of a brilliant summer day. I had booked a car with Hertz, which we could pick up at the railroad station. Within an hour we were out of the town. The drive north was as lovely as I remembered and Barbara loved every mile of the trip. We reached Heed just when Angela was expecting us.
It is light in central Scotland until very late in the summer and as we approached the old house I began to notice signs of a new prosperity. The lane and hedgerows were neat and well tended. The open land below the old house was dotted with young trees, all surrounded by sturdy fencing to protect them from hundreds of fat sheep and a frisky crop of lambs from the previous spring. The house still looked like an exposing hulk from a distance but as we drew near, I realized that the old stone walls had been repaired and the window casings newly painted. The extensive roof had newly fitted slate and over it all flew a colorful banner which I knew to be the symbol of the Earl of Heed. Did that mean that young Robert was in residence?
A young lady wearing a light gray dress and white apron, opened the door but Angela was close behind, coming down the old central stairs. She looked older, as I had expected, but more handsome than I ever remember seeing her. She looked as if she had dressed to play the part of the aristocratic Scottish hostess in a floor length pleated tartan skirt and full, flowing white silk blouse.
After greetings and introductions, she asked the young woman who'd opened the door to help me with our bags and turned with Barbara to go back up the stairs.
"I put you in the tower room. I hope that is all right."
I had a moment of panic but recovered quickly enough that I don't think she noticed. "Yes, of course, thank you," I said.
"It's all been redone and there is a full bath en suite. I generally use it as the guest room now."
The tower was truly beautiful. The old furniture had been reupholstered and the old stone walls looked dry and solid. The same old bed was there, with new mattresses, I was later to discover, and, being high summer, the heavy enclosing hangings around it, removed. In the alcove off the bedroom, where there had previously been only a simple wash stand, there was now a full and very elegant bath. The room looked light and inviting and my apprehensions receded.
Angela had told us to get settled in and then come down to the central hall. "I put together a little informal supper for us. Please don't bother dressing for a formal meal."
I took that to mean I didn't need to put on a dinner jacket, but Barbara insisted that I at least wear dark suit and tie. We quickly showered, a luxury I did not remember from the old days. While I dressed, following my wife's instructions, she got into a long black velvet skirt and deep cranberry red blouse, one of several interchangeable outfits she'd brought along for a succession of dinners at the conference in Glasgow.
"Help me, my dear," She had said, holding out the single string of pearls I had given her for a wedding present. I clasped them for her and she went over to examine herself in a large mirror. I must say she looked stunning.
I don't know if it was because of our haste, or my general surprise at other changes in the room, but it was only when we turned to leave that I noticed the painting of Robert. It hung on the wall opposite the huge bed, just to the right of the door. I realized at once that it had been done from a photograph I'd taken of him the summer before his death. We had been on one of our long tracks along the shores of Loch Arkaig on a very hot summer day. We'd brought trunks and actually gone for a short swim. The water was far too cold for me, even at that time of year, and I'd gotten out while Robert, always the hardy one, had continued swimming alone for a while longer. I'd taken the snap shot just after Robert had gotten out, standing with his back to the loch, the wonderful light of the Scottish summer illuminating his magnificent body and making his hair glow like burnished gold. He looked like some ancient god, emerging from primeval seas.
When Robert's mother had seen the photograph, she had asked me for a copy and when I returned to London, I had a larger print made for her and sent it along with a thank you note a week or so later. The painted portrait was nearly life sized, and, I must say, it was truly splendid.
Upon seeing it I froze. Barbara saw my eyes fixed on the painting and said, "I meant to ask you, dear, is that Robert?"
"Yes." It was all I could manage to say.
"Well, he was certainly as handsome as you've said. Almost as good looking as you, my love."
I was, perhaps, a moment too slow responding to her compliment. "Thank you, my love," I smiled at her and we went off to find Angela.
We entered the central hall, which served as the main living space at Heed. Angela was seated with her back to us at the far end of the huge old room. Behind her a great window with stone tracery and leaded pains rose nearly to the height of the high beamed ceiling.
"Come in," she called and we walked the length of the room toward a grouping of chairs and two sofas had been arranged into an informal circle. To our left a table had been sat for supper. On it were an assortment of cold meats and salads. "I assumed you'd want a little supper. I hope this will be adequate. And please don't think we've waited for you. Robert and I usually dine this late."
It was then that her nephew rose from one of the high backed lounge chairs and my wife and I saw him for the first time. I know I must have gone suddenly white. I was a step or two behind Barbara and she didn't see my face. Angela did, however and gave me a quick, concerned glance before making the introductions.
"Robert is eighteen now, you know," she said as the four of us walked to the dining table.
"Yes, of course," I managed to say. "I'd lost track of the years."
"We just saw the portrait of your uncle in the tower room," Barbara said, "your resemblance to him is quite astounding." "Everyone who knew him tells me so," the boy said and I was struck again, not only by the incredible resemblance, but by the way his voice matched my memory of Robert's voice in tone and cadence and inflection. I really did feel, at least for a moment, as if I had seen a ghost.
Robert helped Angela with her chair at one end of the long table. I noticed that he had the bearing of a man. I helped Barbara with her chair on one side and took the place opposite her. As Robert came past me he smiled, a kind, polite smile, the smile one man gives another in greeting and friendship. But it was a smile which also told me something else. He had no further interest in me. What I had hoped to see was not there. This Robert was not a lover of other men as his uncle had been.
The meal began and I slowly relaxed as the conversation became lively and friendly. This Robert was no ghost, I realized, but an intelligent, articulate, enthusiastic young man. He had just finished his A levels at Gordonstoun and would be entering Oxford in the autumn. He would be at Balliol, his father's old college. It was also, I remembered, the college where his Uncle Robert had passed his own brief time at the university.
Angela told us that Robert had done very well at school. Not only had he done well academically, but had also excelled at sports. The boy looked down modestly as she spoke, as if a little embarrassed by her praise.
"Cricket, I suppose." I said it with a smile, remembering his uncle's love of the game.
"I love cricket," the boy had said with a satisfied glance in my direction, "but I also played rugby and was on the swimming and field teams."
"I don't associate rugby with British public schools," Barbara had interjected.
"It's played at most schools but several of us also played for one of the local town teams." Robert had said, blessing her with one of his beautiful smiles. "
"That must have shown you another side of life," I said, thinking of the rough, working class rugby I'd seen played in England years before.
"Yes. That's one of the things I loved about it. Our teammates were such regular fellows, factory workers and farmers and clerks. It was a welcome change from life at the school."
"Was the school all right with some of its boys going off to do battle with the proletariat?"
"Oh, yes, but I do rather think they considered it a gesture toward the community at large. We did get a bit of grief from the other men on the team, though."
"They saw you as a bunch of interlopers?"
"Well, yes, at first. Thank god they decided I was a regular fellow and that I could hold my own on the field before they discovered I had a title."
"And then they started addressing you as Your Grace, I suppose."
Robert laughed openly and said, "It would be Your Lordship, actually, but no. I insisted they continue calling me Rob."
"My, my, you are a man of the people," I responded with a smile.
Robert's face took on a rather serious expression. "I intend to serve the people of this region in some capacity. I don't want just to lead a privileged, idle life. So, yes, sir, I suppose I do want to be a man of the people, to the degree that they can accept me as such."
"I applaud you, Robert," I responded, feeling a little as if I'd had my hands slapped. "You certainly have the makings of a fine public servant."
"I hope so, sir."
After we'd finished the excellent supper, Angela suggested we move back to the more comfortable chairs for coffee and port. The friendly conversation continued until Angela asked if we'd like more coffee. When I accepted another coffee and Barbara declined, Angela said, "Robert, my dear, why don't you take Barbara for a little tour of the house?" Then to my wife she added, "Robert knows much more about the paintings and furniture than I do. He's been a great help with the restorations we've been able to do over the last few years."
When the young man and my wife had left us, Angela said, "She really is quite lovely, you know?"
"Thank you, Angela. I was very lucky to find her and even more lucky that she'd have me." "Mutually lucky, I'd say." She paused and then went on. "I'd hoped we'd have a chance to talk alone." "Yes, I too." "I must apologize, though. I should have found a way to prepare you for seeing Robert. I hope it wasn't too great a shock." "No, not at all," I lied, "but the resemblance is quite astounding."
"It was apparent even when he was a child. You may remember." "All I remember was that he was quite beautiful." "Yes, but at every age he so resembled my older brother at the same age that mother and I were more or less expecting him to mature into, what shall I say, a younger edition?"
"Yes, I suppose that expresses it." "Actually, it wasn't until the last two or three years that the likeness became so dramatically apparent. He suddenly matured, you know." "Yes."
"It is very odd, though, don't you think, that he would so resemble my older brother and in no way my younger brother, his father?" "Well, yes, but I've seen that sort of thing many times. I suppose the family characteristics are encoded in the genes and just come out as they will from one generation to the next.""I'm sure that's it. By the age of twelve or thirteen it was clear that he would have his uncle's looks. Then at that age he discovered games and sports. His body quickly filled out and he grew another few inches and his voice changed. Suddenly it was as if his namesake had been resurrected. I was sorry my mother hadn't lived to see him as a mature young man."
She was silent for a moment and then went on. "Physically he so resembles my older brother, but as to his personality, what shall I say, his character, he is his father's son." She paused again and then added, "I suppose I should tell you he is already quite the lady's man."
"I had surmised"
"I suspected that you had. He has a girlfriend whom he's brought home for me to meet. She's spent several weekends with us actually."
"I hope you like her." "Oh, yes, very much. They are still very young, of course, but you never know. She is a lovely young woman and from a very suitable family. Robert's mother's parents were quite taken with her as well."
The pour dear was trying to establish for me that her nephew was heterosexual, that he had inherited his father's sexuality, and not that of his uncle. She needn't have bothered as I had already guessed. "You see them, Robert's grandparents?" I said, trying to change the direction of the conversation."Oh, my yes. We've become very close over they years, really very much my own family. I have no one else, of course, apart from Robert. He spends a good deal of time with them as well. We are always together here at Heed for Christmas, you know?" "I'm sure that is wonderful for you." "Yes, it really is." "I should tell you the portrait was also a bit of a shock."
"You recognized the image?" "Yes, the snapshot I'd taken at Loch Arkaig.""Yes. After Robert's death mother wanted an oil portrait done. She loved that photograph and insisted it be used. Tom and I felt it was too intimate to be hung in any of the more public parts of the house so we convinced her to put it there, in Robert's old room. We also had one done from a professional photograph that had been taken just before he left for South America. It isn't nearly as good a likeness but we hung it on the stairs where it's more or less lost among all the other family portraits." "I'll look for it." "Well," she smiled, "it will probably have to be pointed out. The artist got the family features but those paintings of all the old Heeds look so very much alike."
She poured more port and we sat for a while in the grand old hall. Eventually it was up to me to break the silence. "I'm amazed by what you've been able to do with the house, with the entire property."
"Well, mother started it. We had rather sizable insurance settlements after Robert and then Tom were killed." "But that couldn't have covered all the expenses you must have incurred."
I knew she was uncomfortable talking about such things, but I'd said it before I thought.
"Well, no, but it helped start things. With some improvements and better agricultural methods, Heed is now doing quite well. I'm just pleased that we've made something out of it for Robert. It is all his, you know."
It was getting rather late when Barbara and Robert returned. My wife and I said our good nights and went off to the tower. As we lay in the huge old bed, Barbara said, "What a lovely old house." "Yes," I responded, drawing her to me.
"It must bring back a lot of memories for you." "It does, but a lot has changed." "Robert, by the way, he prefers to be called Rob. He told me that his grandmother and then his Aunt Angela had done a great deal of work on the place after his uncle and then his own parents were killed."
"They've done a lot," I said. "That's what Angela and I were discussing while you were off with the boy on your tour." Both of us were very tired and our conversation soon drifted into a happy silence and we were soon asleep.
I woke with the first light as Barbara snuggled against me.
"You sleeping?" She whispered.
"No, just lying here wishing you were awake." "Um, that sounds promising." "Well, you know I love getting the new day off to a pleasant start." "I think we could manage that," she smiled as she ran her moist lips over the unshaved roughness of my cheek.
Reaching down, she fumbled with the snap of my sleeping shorts and quickly opened them. Apart from the shorts I wore nothing. Her right hand moved over my cock, erect as it always was when I first woke.
I freed my own hands so I had better access to her voluminous body under a short silk gown. We knew one another as only married folk or long time lovers can and the patterns of our lovemaking had been worked out between us. We each knew what the other liked.
I fondled the damp folds of her body, running my fingers along her moist nether lips.
She spread her legs, giving me better access and I let my fingers move in a little more, over her quivering clitoris and then back again as she progressed from damp to wet.
She moaned again and rose up in the bed.
My cock was dripping now, ready, wanting.
"Let me take charge today," she whispered, her voice lost in the high ceilings of the huge old room.
"Yes, my lady," I smiled as she moved over me, straddling my body. She leaned forward and brought her lips to mine.
"I love you," she purred.
"I love you, too."
"I love you more." "Not possible," I said as she lowered her body onto me, impaling herself on my throbbing cock. "Oh, God!" I gasped at the thrill of it as I thrusting into her.
Barbara began to move slowly, lifting her lithe body off me, nearly to the point of losing me, then settling back down again in one long, warm, wet movement. We were both already so aroused before we'd started and I knew we couldn't last long. Within only a few minutes I felt her body tense. At the same time, I felt the first impulses of my building climax move down my spine to settle in my balls.
"Oh, yes," she moaned again.
"Yes," I echoed as the quivers of her silent climax ran through her, setting off my own release. Our passions subsided and her body collapsed onto mine.
As she moved down to lie on my heaving chest, I looked over her shoulder and in a fleeting glance saw the portrait of Robert on the wall opposite the bed. His magnificent body shown in the morning light and I knew that he was smiling at me, at us.