Hervé was waiting, slightly nervous, to be called onto the stage. He turned to look back toward his aunt who was sitting some rows behind - he was still surprised that the woman took the trouble to come to his graduation ceremony. His aunt was listening, earnestly and stiff, to the dean's speech and never looked towards her nephew.
The boy sitting at his side gave him a small thrust with the elbow to recall him to attention - it was not good for the graduating students to divert their attention while the dean was talking...
Hervé pretended to listen again to the boring speech, but his thoughts were a thousand miles away. He was recalling his life. Not like in a complete movie running on a screen, but rather like disordered clips shown on a moviola, at times in slow motion, at times faster, clips yet to be organized in a coherent narration...
When he tragically was left alone, his aunt came to fetch him. He didn't like his aunt. He didn't hate her either, just he was not at ease with his mother's older sister, who was a spinster - a thin, bony, stiff and severe woman. But at that point she was all that remained to him, and anyway she came to take care of him.
He had to admit that he didn't miss anything with her. Nothing... besides the human warmth, the affection that he so much was feeling he needed. Possibly this wasn't the woman's fault, probably the woman never felt loved therefore was not able to love. His aunt was strongly conscious of her duty, this was certain. Thus, when she had to take care of the child who just became an orphan at only ten years of age, of course she didn't step back.
The terrible accident... his father, mother and his little sister... the carriage overturned down the cliff... they were barely recognizable... He was not allowed to see them, because they didn't want the child to be shocked. But this prohibition was really cruel for the child, shocked Hervé much more than if he saw the torn bodies of his loved ones.
No, certainly his aunt didn't make him miss anything - neither clothing nor food. And above all she didn't let him miss an education, the studies he loved so much. The little boy got from his parents the love of learning, intellectual curiosity, the pleasure of discovery and of reasoning...
His father was a primary school teacher, his mother didn't work, was a housewife but, as she was the daughter of a famous physician, she went to superior schools and got a remarkable well-rounded education, that she later deepened by her own efforts.
When the little Hervé started to attend primary school, he was already able to read and write. And not only that - he was able to play the recorder, he was able to recognize and appreciate art masterpieces, he knew passages from famous writers that at times his father read to him at bedtime and that the child, thank to his prodigious memory, memorized, in their essence even if not word for word.
His father... Yes, he missed the tenderness and the smile of his mother, but even more he terribly missed the availability and the steadiness of his father.
As well as the freedom he enjoyed with them...
He well remembered, a few months after his aunt took him into her home, the scandalised glance of the woman who, entering the room where he was having a bath in the zinc tub, realized that the boy was totally naked.
At this memory Hervé smiled and recalled the peremptory words of his aunt, "Cover yourself immediately, shameless boy! One's intimate parts are never to be shown to anybody, not even to ourselves!"
He, surprised, answered back, "But, aunt, how can I wash my penis if I wear my underpants?"
His aunt blushed violently and, with a visible effort to remain calm, said, "One doesn't wash... there! One doesn't touch there! It washes by itself - water does the work... Touching or looking at oneself there is... is a serious sin! Woe to you if I find you once again in this... in this predicament!" and she went out, stiffer than ever.
A serious sin? No, it was not possible, his aunt had to be somewhat weird... What would she have said if she knew that he used to take a bath together with his father, both stark naked, in the same tub? And he did look and touch... he even touched his father there, to wash him.
He recalled his father's body - a handsome man, slender but strong.
One day, while they were taking their bath, he asked his father, "Dad, will I too became handsome like you, one day or another, when I'm grown up?"
"Of course, and you will become even more handsome than me!" his father answered him with a wide smile.
Yes, he had to admit it - he grew up very well, he had a handsome body, mainly thanks to his physical activity and the gymnastics he practiced at school... and yet he still wasn't, at least in his own eyes, as handsome as his father.
Even though once his aunt told him, "The more you grow older, the more you resemble him."
He didn't need to ask her to whom she was referring with that "him".
It was weird - nine years after that tragic accident, the image of his little sister had quite completely vanished from his mind, the image of his mother was slowly fading away, only that of his father was still intact. He loved all of them, but he adored his father. He could even have idealized him, who knows... but to him he remained a model, an ideal to imitate, or rather to equal.
This is why he too wanted to study to become a schoolteacher like his father. His aunt didn't oppose it at all. She instead enrolled him in the best school, although it was so far from her house, and even though the fees were quite expensive. He anyway committed himself completely in his studies therefore at the end of the first year he got a scholarship for his brilliant results.
Of course the change in his life... the changes, to better say. The first one when, becoming an orphan, he had to leave his small and beloved town, the place familiar to him and his friends and companions to move to his aunt's house - an old and austere building on the ridge of a hill, far from everything and everyone. No neighbours, no friends with whom to play. He could not invite his schoolmates to his aunt's house, so he could not accept their invitations.
"I certainly don't want to have a gang of ill-mannered boys storming here in my home!" the woman declared the first time he tried to ask her if he could invite some of his class-mates to spend the week-end with him there.
His aunt took him to school every morning on her gig then went to fetch him at the end of the lessons, punctual like the church clock. To cover the stretch of road between her house and the school it took exactly forty-five minutes at trot. Anyway the woman had nothing to do, she could live on a private income. Differently from his father who had had to work hard, in the morning teaching at the school and giving some private lessons in the afternoons. And yet his father always found the time to spend with his son... So different from his aunt.
So Hervé, after his parents' death, grew up lonely, in spite of his desire to have friends... It wasn't so hard - he filled his time with studies and reading a lot - his aunt had a good and rich library, even better than that of his parents.
The second change happened when he was fifteen, when he was enrolled in the boarding school in the city to carry on with his studies. It was an austere boarding school run by the Jesuit fathers. Each boy had his own small bedroom. Class every morning, rehearsing every afternoon, a walk in the evening if the weather was fine, then "curfew" - after washing in the common lavatory, each boy had to go to his room. The only moments when he could chat a little with his schoolmates was during the meals and the evening walk. During all the other hours it was "silence" time, and this meant that they could talk only if they were questioned by a superior or an overseer, but absolutely never with another student, under pain of severe punishments.
Therefore, there also he was lonely. But this solitude was, in some ways, worst than that he underwent at his aunt's home - there he was really alone. In the boarding school, on the contrary, he was at elbow-to-elbow with his companions but it was prohibited to communicate. Once again what rescued him were his studies and his love for reading, to which he added a third passion - drawing.
Their drawing teacher, father Duvalier, was a really skilled teacher and above all was able to raise the students' enthusiasm for drawing. Surely much more than their teacher of Latin!
"Monsieur Brout Hervé!" a voice called out.
The boy roused himself and felt like a long shudder all along his back - his turn came, he wasn't even aware that they already started to hand over the parchment diplomas.
He stood up and went onto the stage, feeling excited. The dean, wearing the severe academic cap and gown elegantly draped, pronounced the ritual form and handed him the official teacher's diploma. Hervé, taking it bowed to the dean, then towards the teachers group, and finally to his schoolmates and their families in the audience, as he was told he had to do. He then went back to his seat. He then noticed that his aunt, with a small handkerchief of lace, was drying a tear shining at a corner of her eye.
This hit him - he never saw his aunt cry, she didn't shed a single tear even at the funeral of his parents...
"In her way, my aunt loves me," he thought as if he was struck by the thought. "But then... why up to now she never showed it to me?" he asked himself, feeling rather puzzled.
This discovery made him feel something like intense warmth on his body, and suddenly he felt again like a little boy, but this time a little less lost than when he entered into the house, and the life, of his aunt...
When the ceremony was over, there was a party for all the new graduates, their families and the teachers. The aunt, as usual, didn't eat - she was gently nibbling.
Suddenly the woman, with her usual dry tone, asked him, "And now, nephew Hervé Brout, what do you intend to do?"
The boy looked at her then hesitantly said, "Look for a job... possibly as a teacher..."
"Therefore, I guess, you don't intend to come back to my home."
It was not a question but a statement, dry, apparently emotionless.
"No, I don't think I will... The Prefect told me I can sleep some more time here in my bedroom, up to the week before the new school year starts, so I can in the mean time look for a job..."
"I thought you might need some money before you settle. Therefore I opened an account in your name at the bank that is in front of your school - each month you can go there and withdraw a monthly allowance. This up to the day you are twenty-one years old, that is for two years."
"Thank you very much, aunt..."
"My duty." the woman curtly answered.
Good, this gave him some more breathing room. He didn't ask her how much was the monthly allowance, but surely his aunt, as painstaking a woman as she was, would have calculated an average rent for a small bedroom, two meals a day, a change of clothes for each season... He could swear on that. Anyway her gesture showed a real thoughtfulness.
The aunt went to thank the teachers, to pay her respects to the Jesuit fathers, then said "adieu" to her nephew and went away.
"Hervé, are you coming to celebrate with us, tonight?" Daniel, a class-mate, asked him.
"Why not? We are at last free..." the boy answered with a smile.
He liked Daniel - in spite of the fact that he was from a very rich family, he never put on airs, and for the little that their boarding school allowed, Daniel was as nearer to a friend as he could have in there.
"Dad, I absolutely don't mean to be disrespectful, but... I don't want a new governess! I'm fifteen, now!"
"Fourteen, just fourteen - you are not yet up to caring for yourself! And I, you know it very well, am too busy with my business to take care of you completely. Moreover, it is the house that needs a governess, you can understand this, I presume!"
Yes, it was true, his father didn't take care of him - he often wouldn't see his father for almost a week, and also on Sundays... he possibly spent them with his mistress. But Roland didn't intend to yield on this point.
"I anyway don't need a governess taking care of me!" he protested again. He then added, "Or else I will make her run away like I did with Madame Sorel!" and he bit his tongue.
But his father didn't seem amazed at that. He simply didn't answer, went to his coach, signalled to the coachman to go - his duty called him and he had already spent too much time with his son.
But Monsieur Laforest, along the way, thought that his son was partially right - he was nowadays a little man, and having to be tied to a governess' apron strings like a little child had to be somewhat unpleasant. And yet he couldn't leave him alone - he was a little man, that's right, but after all he was still too young... Ah, if only his wife, God rest her soul, was still alive!
Roland went back inside the house, upset and more than ever determined not to yield. A governess! certainly, he made them run away, one after the other, and he was feeling proud of that. Madame Sorel was the more irksome, but he managed to get rid of her. She took with coldness the toad she found in her bed sheets and, as Roland put there also a note where he wrote, "Try to kiss it, who knows it might become a handsome prince. Roland." The woman said to him, sourly, "At least you have something good - you are not the kind who attacks from under cover!"
She held out against the mouse he put in her dressing table, even though she fluttered like a goose when she saw the mouse run as she opened the drawer, and she didn't turn a hair when he put salt in her coffee... but when finally Roland, after spending an entire afternoon in the villa park, gathered a full can of worms of all kinds - earthworms, hairy worms, small green and yellow worms, and also black ones - and when he scattered them on each of her camellia pots on the windows of her bedroom, and when Madame Sorel in the evening withdrew to her quarters and saw that swarming horde, well, that was the last straw. So the woman resigned on the spot!
Roland, recalling it, smiled to himself, amused. No, not one more governess... he would surely make her also run away headlong, faster than the wind, he swore to himself.
His father, busy with his steel plant business, forgot the governess problem. He had to work hard if he wanted the steelworks to become more important - from the ironsmith workshop of his grandfather to the modern plants he created carrying on his father's business... that was a long time ago! But he could not stop, not even a moment. People think that rich people makes money just lounging about all day long, but he knew even too well that was anything but true!
Anyway, during the frugal meal he ordered and ate in his office, the industrialist recalled his son's problem... A governess... Well, he could possibly run with the hare and hunt with the hounds - a governess to take care of the house and of the estate, and a tutor for his boy... It would be more expensive, but... Possibly, he thought, hiring a boy just graduated from the Jesuits' school, he would not have to pay him too much. One of those big country boys, who would be happy to work for an important family...
As soon as he ate his dinner, he decided to go at once to see the reverend Jesuit fathers, "The faster one takes out his tooth," he thought, "the faster the pain will cease."
And to find the governess, he could put an ad in the newspaper. Yes, first the Jesuits, then the newspaper office.
"So I can work all afternoon without any worry." he thought while his coach stopped near the Jesuits' boarding school.
He was at once received by the Dean - Laforest was too important a person to make him wait.
When the man explained the reason for his visit, the priest said, "In fact we have a really fine boy, from a good family, who just got his diploma and who is looking for a job. He is an orphan - a roof and a job would be perfect for him. He is a boy with good sentiments, and of merit, I can assure you..."
"If you recommend him, Father, he will surely be the right person... Even though my son, I have to admit it, has a difficult character... Would it be possible to meet now the boy you have in mind?"
"I think so, I will send for him. And... you can quietly talk with him here in my study; after introducing him to you, I will leave you alone."
"Thank you, Father. If the boy turns out to be the right person, I will remember your charitable works..."
The man's philosophy was - never give something for nothing - let's first see what the goods are worth, and then I can pay...
Meanwhile Roland was in his room, engrossed with a book. He was reading "Robinson Crusoe" in English... and dreaming he could live that incredible adventure. He would not worry about being alone on an island, he was used to loneliness. None of the house servants had children, and even when he met his cousins, they were in turn watched over by the various governesses with their severe stern expressions. Moreover his cousins were all boring... His real friends were the books.
"Young Master, I have to tidy your room and bed..." the querulous voice of the house-maid said from behind the door,
Josette... Roland hurriedly stood up and went to check his night gown... no, there weren't compromising traces.
"Come in." he then said.
"Sorry, young Master, would you please go in another room, so that I will not bother you?" the woman asked, coming in with the buckets and the brooms.
Roland went out without answering, taking his book with him.
Josette... she should be twenty-seven years old; she was in their service for as long as he could remember... Josette who looked at him with sly eyes that put him ill at ease, after that time when...
It happened about one year before. Roland had his first wet dream. In the morning he woke up and noticed a damp stain in the front of his nightgown, exactly there in front, at the crotch level. At first he was afraid he wet the bed like a toddler and this embarrassed him very much. It was ages since that had happened! But then, touching there, he noticed it was something sticky. He brought his finger at his nose and smelled a weird smell. And that thing was whitish and sticky... it was not pee, it seemed rather... pus!
Worried, he pulled up his nightgown, sitting on his bed, and carefully checked the area under the stain - he passed his fingertips on his groin, then on his testicles, on the penis... nothing. And yet that liquid was there. He then slowly pulled down the skin of his little member to check if there was an internal pimple, and saw that there also was some of that weird liquid, therefore he understood that it came from there. It was almost shining. It had a peculiar smell... like lye. But everything seemed in good order. He made the skin slip more downward until he uncovered completely his glans. Nothing.
The only thing he noticed was that his member seemed to increase in size... and yet he didn't feel the need to pee... He made the skin slip again upwards, still worried, and carefully checked again his member. No, no, nothing - it was sound, pink, and smooth like velvet. He pulled the skin again downwards until he totally uncovered the glans and saw that his member was still going on to grow in size and length. With a handkerchief he gently cleaned it - the light brushing of the soft fabric on the swollen glans gave him a subtle feeling, like a quivering, something agreeable. He passed again and again the handkerchief on it even when it was totally clean - the feeling was increasing and becoming more and more pleasurable.
Surprised, pleased, he went on - his left hand was keeping the skin well down and his right hand brushed the glans and his penis was now hard as never before, and the pleasure was stronger. Something he never experienced before, something mysterious was happening to him. The fabric handkerchief brushed his testicles and he was at once aware that there also he was feeling pleasure, and that the small bag seemed contracted, hardened and wasn't any more soft as usual. It was good touching himself in that way, really good. How come he never experienced something like that before, not even when he was taking his bath and brushed there with the sponge?
While he was caressing there with both hands, his genitals were swollen and throbbing; he closed his eyes almost to better savour those weird feelings. A light, gentle trembling ran along his body and he understood that something was about to happen. He opened his eyes again and looked at the tip of the uncovered glans, now reddened, and he saw something like a clear drop of a pearly liquid gush out from the little slit. It surely wasn't urine, it was that weird liquid... to make it come out easier, he squeezed his hard peg, two or three times, up and down, and the pearl became bigger and the pleasure increased - he perceived that by squeezing his penis with his whole hand and moving it up and down the good feelings were increasing and reached such an intensity to make his whole body tremble.
He gripped it stronger, moved the hand up and down rapidly - oh gosh! It was pure pleasure! His breath became heavier, almost panting, more and more intense shudders spreading from his penis all over his body and down his legs. He had to let himself fall backwards on the mattress, feeling suddenly devoid of all strength, but his hand was going on moving up and down on the hot peg, and the other hand was caressing his firm and tense testicles. Suddenly he felt like an electric shock, a spasm, and felt that something was shooting out of his member's tip. He reopened his eyes and looked down - he saw that the whitish liquid was oozing on his hand and suddenly felt weak, very weak... But of a really sweet weakness.
His body gradually relaxed with a set of tremors more and more spaced. And finally a low and trembling sigh gushed out from the depth of his lungs and he relaxed completely. He then brought his wet hand at his nose to check the smell - weird but agreeable. The liquid dripped down and he wasn't fast enough to move away his hand, so that some ran onto his face and fell also onto his lips.
Instinctively, almost without thinking, he licked his lips... also the taste was weird, but agreeable. He then brought the hand wet with his seed to his lips and licked it - this time he felt it was slightly salty, or to better say, sweet-salty... certainly it was neither urine nor pus... Whatever it was, it was the result of an intense, wonderful pleasure.
He cleaned himself with his nightgown then, feeling his strength was back, he stood up. Went to wash himself leaving, as usual, his nightgown on his unmade bed.
He didn't think about it any more. But in a short while Josette came to tidy his bed and room. She took the nightgown and noticed the stain.
She brought it to her nose and smelled it, then turned towards the boy and with a sly tone said, "Oh, the young master is becoming a man, isn't he?" and waved the nightgown like a trophy and laughed.
Roland didn't understand what the housemaid meant, but her sly look, the fact that she discovered that stain, made him blush and he felt terribly embarrassed. Roland went out to avoid the amused and sly glances of the woman, as he was upset about them.
For some time he didn't do anything more, fearing the housemaid would laugh of him again. But the memory of that intense pleasure didn't leave him so, finally, a few days later, he decided to try it again - he just took a hand towel this time so as not to stain his nightgown.
He felt again those wonderful feelings that his hands and his genitals were arousing in his body and spurted again that scented liquid.
He didn't know he discovered masturbation, he just knew he could have at his will those unsuspected and so good sensations. So he intensified those exercises. And month after month, he observed the growing, the increasing emissions of that liqueur, and he felt more and more intense emotions...