Winifred stood proudly in the gray light of dawn. A hair over five feet tall, seven stone, and barely nineteen years old, she was stark naked save a pair of Jack’s childhood hunting boots and a bright red fox hat, its tail flapping in the wind. She blushed down to her navel, and her green eyes burned with fear and excitement.
Jack and the others watched her stand there, her cream skin with nary a blemish nor a freckle was sheened with morning dew. Her smallish breasts were high and pert, the curve of her bottom seemed to jut out at a lurid angle. Her chest heaved, and her heart raced from the shame of being naked, the joy of being the savior of the foxes, and, if Jack guessed correctly, the wicked thrill of being wildly bad.
She turned, the contrast of the black of the boots against her white skin making her seem even more naked and the bright splash of carrot orange between her legs directing every eye down to the virgin shadow every man in the hunting party almost painfully longed for.
Norman Gordon-Stanton, tallish, lean, bespectacled, and wearing a dark gray hunting suit and deerstalker, took off his gloves to shake Jack’s hand properly.
“An outstanding diversion,” he said, clasping Jack’s hand and shoulder.
The other seven men murmured, “hear hear!”
Lord Strachey, by far the cruelest among the hunters, took a rifle from his valet and aimed it high into the air and away from the group and the girl. Even though they knew the sound was coming, each man jumped a bit as the thunderous crack of the shot echoed through the woods.
Winifred jumped at the sound and, startled, turned in a flash and ran. The poor thing managed only a few feet before she stumbled and tripped forward, her white knees painted green and red with grass and blood. She waited there for a moment on all fours, like the very game she was proxy for, and unknowingly gave the hunters a view of the pink split peach between her thin legs.
Jack’s hands tightened into fists in his leather gloves, and he suddenly felt very good about his marital choice.
After a moment, the girl finally got up, and without looking back, she sprinted into the woods.
Strachey fetched something small and white from his saddlebag. Jack saw it was a pair of his bride-to-be’s knickers. The cruel man rubbed said garments into the dogs’ noses, which waited as patiently as hounds could.
“They’re good boys, they won’t hurt her,” he promised with a steely glare.
The clubmen held the hounds back as they mounted their horses. They gave the girl a fighting chance, then, after a good fifteen minutes, the horn was blown, and they were off.
Winifred was, above all other things, immensely caring. Beautiful, delicate, well-spoken, book-learned? Yes, she was indeed all of those as well, but the young ginger waif was above all else caring. Which was interesting because empathy was something her fiancé had no use for.
Second, to caring, introversion was Winifred’s most noticeable trait. This, too, was at odds with her husband-to-be’s disposition, which was gregarious, to say the least. John Sackville, son of the third Earl of Amherst and more colloquially known as “Randy Jack” to the population of greater Londontown was indeed the life of the party and a fixture of London society.
Why then was this union to be? Well, young Winifred’s father, Geoffrey Egerton-Cavendish, Earl of Wessex, had been assured that young John Sackville was of stock so noble his blood was bluer than the Danube by various members of the club. John himself had seen the girl at church services one summer day and thought she was particularly comely and irreproachably devout. He felt a driving need to ruin her all at once.
“The Club,” of course, was The Club de Lancey; a gentleman’s establishment built for the reading of newspapers and the smoking of cigars, the playing of billiards and the drinking of a great quantity of the highland’s finest whiskies. Norman Gordon-Stanton, who was indeed one of the wealthiest men in London, owned and operated said club, and some of the most powerful men in Great Britain were members. It was well known that most of the clientele were womanizers, hedonists, and cads who used the club as a base of operations, an alibi, and a hub for gossip and reconnaissance.
There was the most powerful of all, Horatio “Dewy” Dewhurst, the Duke of Wimbledon; a man of hungers both rich and varied and including but not limited to wine, young women, young men, and games of chance alike. Julian Wentworth, Esq, Lord Dewhurst’s personal barrister, and a well-known shylock. Lord Philip Dunne, son of the Duke of Strachey, who it was said had an entire secret family in India, commonly known as Lord Strachey or Lord Stretch by old school chums. Dudley Price, a well-connected land baron with holdings in five continents, lovers in six. Sir Aaron “Old Fish” Fisher, heir the Earlship of Wellsbury, who it was said had visited every brothel in England, Scotland and Wales, and rounding out this motley crew was the aforementioned Randy Jack, who in his prime had a proclivity for seeing how many debutantes he could deflower in a night and later when that sport bored him how many he could involve in an imbroglio at once.
Popular accounts mark the final tally of the latter north of seven, but no more than a baker’s dozen.
Still, Jack, being a crude businessman and an almost preternaturally Machiavellian social politician, understood the merit and even necessity for an attractive and respectable wife. Thus he engaged with one Geoffrey Egerton-Cavendish, Earl of Wessex, about becoming engaged to his daughter.
Having procured said hand and a promise of lush dowry, Jack being Jack, still could not truly be happy with the deal unless he tested the girl’s mettle. Thus he concocted a rather intricate holiday for himself and invited his bride-to-be to come to his familial (and come the impending death of his father, personal) estate.
While not a wholly unusual request during an engagement, Jack made the outing a bit more precarious than usual by arranging that most of his family would be absent, as they were called to another holiday on the Isle of Man. So it was only the man himself, his cadre of rakes, her maids, and his dying father as a chaperone.
Now, the tale that follows was not completely envisioned by said lord. That is giving him too much credit. Jack did, though, set in motion a variety of situations suited to facilitate reactions in Winifred. Catalysts were the forte of a student of human seduction and investigation, of both Jack was a prize pupil.
Thus we come to exhibit one: a box of Vulpes vulpes; the common red fox.
As she was delivered to Jack’s estate, one Winifred Egerton-Cavendish was deposited next to said box for a not too short time whilst the driver of Lord Jack’s buggy was fixing its thrown wheel.
Note the initial perking of the girl’s ears. Then the catching of breath, then the comments to her maid about the cuteness of said animals, then the rising of these comments in octaves as said cuteness overwhelms the girl. It was all, almost eerily, premonished by Jack.
Ten points, mister Sackville, but to what end?
Lord Jack himself rode down to the hobbled buggy and looking like the very model of masculinity in his riding outfit and crop, he noted said girl’s immediate reaction to the cunning little mammals and bid that they in their crate rode in the now fixed buggy so that his betrothed could ‘ooh’ and ‘ahh’ at their eccentric barks and playful nipping at each other’s ears and so on.
Jack learned (or relearned since careful reconnoitering had told him this already) that the young girl’s empathy was most potent in the vicinity of small furry animals. The cuter, the better. This fact may have been dangling in Jack’s mind when he sent his valet to procure the fluffiest and most foxy of foxes in all the pens of merry old.
“Jack, are they not the most precious little things you’ve ever seen?” she asked with girlish glee that sent his dark heart racing.
“Oh, indeed, fair Winifred, they’re delightfulness is matched only by yours,” he said in his warm melodic baritone.
“Do they have names? Could-could I name them?” she asked with wide-eyed happiness.
“Name them? Oh, if it’s your wish, my dear, but it would be a shame to get so attached to the little things when they are heading out to the hunt tomorrow,” he said, his own eyes mournful.
“H-hunt? Oh dear, you don’t mean-?” she seemed within seconds of the revelation in tears.
“A good number of my friends are in the country, up from London. I don’t often partake, but Lord Dewhurst is quite partial to heading out with the hounds and hunting fox, and–well– he is the Duke of Wimbledon!”
All of this was, of course, a lie. Jack was very fond of hunting and had been blooded a dozen times before his seventeenth birthday. At twenty-five, he had hunted both lions in the Serengeti and bison in the Americas.
“Jack, they’re so beautiful. Look how they tumble about with each other!” she said, again happy and transported by looking at their little follies.
“Indeed, my pet, but the blokes want what the blokes want. I can try to dissuade them, but the duke–by gum, he’s foxed with the king himself!”
Her red eyebrows were set with worry and the hope that she could figure out how to convince her fiancé to change the fate of her new favorite animals.
When all arrived at the great country home of Lord Sackville, a feast was set out the likes of which Winifred had never seen, and she was from quite rich stock herself, the daughter of an earl!
Still, her father had a Spartan taste, and Jack had been schooled for a time in France and came to love the Rococo pageantries of that land.
Let’s skip ahead, shall we? A lunch was served. The girl was charmed by the line of eloquent and worldly friends of Jack. The men retired to billiards, and Jack walked young Winifred around the palatial estate and delicately wooed as he gleaned the secrets of her psyche.
What he found was a brilliant, if innocent, girl who would make a fine wife. She had the breeding to bear him strong, handsome children. She had the social graces to behave impeccably even if sat down next to a princess, matched with no real desire to attend court unnecessarily and hobbies enough to keep her out of her hair. A perfect mate for a man who would spend most of his time away from her in London, getting blind drunk and having orgies anyhow.
As well, she was cream-skinned and buxom almost to an inappropriate degree. Full lips, pleasant hips, and a body that Jack took a very educated guess would fuck like rabbit in heat.
With his decision made, he turned to her and gauged her desire.
“I know so much of these things are left to handshakes and paternal negotiations, but sweet Winifred knowing you in these few hours, my heart has soared in a way I’ve never experienced. I need to know if you wish this union with your heart as well, more than simply engaging with me because of your familial duties,” Jack said seriously, nearly reaching out and touching her arm as he did, but stopping, for effect, before he broke the rules of betrothal.
Her eye welled for the third time that afternoon (once with the foxes and one when she tripped on a large rock outside the garden,) as she nodded her head meaningfully.
“I believe I do feel the same, John. I believe with all my heart that I do,” she said, and she took his hand and smiled prettily up at him.
It was in that moment, when she looked at him like a little angel, he knew he had to ruin her a bit before walking her down the aisle. He couldn’t abide a white dress without a little irony.
“I’m so glad, but I must admit something to you, my love,” Jack said with a deep breath.
“My friends are dear to me, I’ve known most of them since I was a small boy, but they can be a rascally bunch. Good-natured, indeed, and not a cruel bone in any of their bodies, but still, they are a playful lot, but sometimes they can be–well–a bit bawdy,” he said with an apologetic shrug.
She smiled, showing once more her unwavering empathy.
“Oh John, I have two brothers. I know the rambunctions of men. I’ll let the billiards room banter miss my ears,” she said with a laugh.
“But please, John, please, can you speak to them about their fox hunt,” she begged.
“I can say for certain that I would do anything to save these animals. You know how men are, and my appeal to their mercy will probably gain only ribbing and jocularity, not salvation for the crimson critters you so honorably have taken up the cause for,” Jack said, his tongue deftly weaving his spider web.
“Perhaps I could speak to them?” she asked meekly, obviously her shyness warring with her compassion.
“You are a brave and admirable soul, and I’m lucky to have a future with you at my side. Indeed you will be the good angel on my shoulder,” Jack said with nothing but love in his eyes.
Though his eyes were, unbeknownst to Winifred, angled directly into her cleavage.
After supper, the men laughed and brandied in the study, and Winifred nervously tried to work up the courage to begin her defense of the foxes.
“Lord Dewhurst, it’s lovely to see you again, by the way. I’m not sure you remember, but my father had you over a few Summers ago when you were entertaining that dignitary for, where was it?” she asked, smiling demurely.
Dewy, as they all called him, took her fine hand in his and patted it.
“Yes, yes, how could I forget! But then you were a tiny thing, no higher than my waist! Indeed, indeed that was the Pasha of Tripoli. A strange man from a strange land,” Dewy said, his large belly jiggling as he laughed.
“He seemed so, but you hosted him admirably,” she said, making Jack chuckle as he eavesdropped.
The Pasha, Jack remembered, brought a small harem of dark-skinned whores who had shown the whole club a weekend still whispered about in back alleys across Europe.
“Lord Dewhurst, I had a chance to take a look at the foxes John procured for your hunt,” she said, trying to sound casual but seemed obvious to the room full of duplicitous businessmen and lords.
“Oh? I never see the things. Bad luck! I’ll get a good look when I bag them!” he said with a loud laugh followed by a long coughing fit.
Dewy was nearly 60 and not exactly the picture of health. Jack shook his head as he watched Lord Dewhurst’s yellow eyes groping at Winifred’s neckline.
“But Lord Dewhurst, you should see them! They are the most darling things. It seems a shame to hurt such sweet little things. They have such character!” she pleaded.
Old Dewy took her hand and patted it.
“I know, I know, but it is our tradition! We’ve come from business and homes in different countries and put off meetings and other responsibilities to join our friends here and take up a sport that has a long and distinguished history, young lady,” Dewy explained to my young bride-to-be, who looked frustrated with the facts presented to her.
“But Lord Dewhurst, there are any number of sports intelligent men such as yourselves can engage in, why participate in a bloody and violent tradition?” she pleaded.
Jack patted her on the shoulder and comforted her.
“Dear sweet Winifred. I’m sorry you have to be here on the weekend of our hunt. I assure you we will be kind. If we catch the little rascals, it will be a quick end, I promise,” Jack said, looking down at her frilly frock and wondering what tricks he could teach such a bright girl.
The various older men played their parts and grumbled and were generally flabbergasted at the idea that a young woman would halt their sport and question their
The idea was, Jack admitted to himself, ridiculous. Still, in general, life was ridiculous, and if one did not attempt to orchestrate the surreal, one would never manufacture the divine. And manufactured divinity was essential because waiting around for miracles was boring.
Thus, at breakfast and before the hunt, Jack bid young Winifred to meet him in his private library and, with a deep sigh, produced a complex and mostly false confession.
“My sweet, I must say, thinking of your feeling for the poor foxes and that today’s hunt might cause you a moment of unhappiness kept me up all night,” he said, indeed red-eyed.
In actuality, it was not the thought of Winifred’s despair that kept him up, but the new maid that had been hired. Like Winifred, she was red-haired and buxom, and indeed Jack had turned the girl on her belly and fucked her wildly, imagining she was his bride-to-be and taking her several times until the sun rose and its sleepy yellow beams shone on the reddened buttock of said maid.
“Oh, John, I knew you’d understand,” Winifred said, feeling that her fiancé was truly the caring man for her to give her heart to as well as her body, which she’d secretly been more than a little excited about.
“The trouble is the lads are set on some kind of sport. It was in the small hours that I thought it could be a hoot if we convinced them that instead of a ‘real’ fox hunt, we could make a game of it and have some sort of, as the French would say, ‘faux’ hunt,” he said with a laugh.
Her green eyes flashed.
“Oh, John, we could make a game of it! It could be fun! I mean, I’ve seen my father at the hunt, and it’s all the dress-up and pageantry that they are really looking for. Out with the hounds and so on. For what it’s worth, they could be chasing…” she trailed off, trying to think of something properly silly.
“You,” Jack added with a smooth chuckle.
“Yes!” she laughed brightly, “they could be chasing me for all they cared.”
From there, the tale grows almost comical. Jack pacing in the garden half the day planning with the girl, expounding to her the love these worldly men had for their fox hunt and what eccentric heights they would have to go to replace their time-honored tradition.
By the witching hour, Jack realized he genuinely liked the lass. This had no real bearing on his desire to ruin her, in fact, just the opposite. He would make her worthy of being the queen’s bridge partner in the light and at the same time have her a rutting little whore in his bed come dusk.
The girl, blushing, had fought as well as she could. Jack had given her wild instructions, but after hours of talking to him, these unthinkable things came to seem more than reasonable. They were obvious and made perfect sense.
Thus the next morning at dawn, the girl became the prey and saved those tiny foxes.
In a clearing, after running full speed for a good ten minutes, Winifred started to wonder what the hell she was doing.
She stood in the dark green woods, the leaves and grass soaked with dew, and panted wildly. She looked down at her body, her alabaster skin now dusted with tiny cuts and a few early signs of bruises. She’d always marked easily.
Dew had indeed covered her naked body, and now her skin was covered in goose pimples, and her large, rather puffy nipples were as hard and tight as she had ever seen them.
As the true absurdity of what she was doing started to dawn, she heard a horn and the barking of dogs. There was no time for thought as she once more ran as fast as she could.
Jack, though certainly more than happy to share with his mates, was particularly interested in catching this more delectable prey. Luckily, this being his familial home, he knew the woods well and imagined the most likely route the girl would take.
The dogs as well had picked up on her scent, which Jack imagined was subtle and sweet, and he imagined he too could just barely sense a trace of it in the air.
Sadly the chase did not take long and ended in Jack and two of the hounds coming to a large, almost bare oak whose strong branches held the faux fox. Jack laughed to himself as he looked up at the frightened girl, who’d climbed higher than seemed possible, and also marveled at the unencumbered view of her crouching form, which showed now the split peach he’s glanced at early.
“My love, I’ve caught you. Can you climb down, and I shall give you my coat before the others arrive?” Jack said merrily.
She, with much dexterity but little grace, climbed down, giving her pink and white skin a few more little scratches and cuts.
As she hung from a low branch, Jack plucked like a ripe fruit and held her over his lap. He directed his horseback to the house and fetched the horn that would let the others know he was the victor, but paused before blowing it and after a moment returned it to his saddlebag.
As Jack rode, he took his riding gloves off and rested his hand on the girl’s round posterior, guiding the horse that had been his since he was a boy with his legs. Abigail moaned and mewed as the bumpy ride pressed her naked body against his, and his hand bounced on her, landing with a few little smacks on her bottom.
“John!” she said, as one rather hearty gallop caused his hand to come down on her hard.
He smiled a wide and wicked grin.
“Now, now, I caught you fair and square, and if I want to give the prize a bit of a rough handling, that’s in my right,” he said, bringing his hand down a few more times on her bottom until it was almost as red as her fox hat.
The first strike enraged her, but the next four or five seemed to somehow hypnotize her. When his hand moved down, between her legs. She bit her lip, but made no move to stop him. His hands were, as always, greedy. Exploring between her thin legs as he rode, he could barely contain himself.
As his fingers met wetness, not of dew or sweat, he held in a groan.
“Oh, John,” she said more dreamily as he steered them into a roundabout and then behind a large grassy knoll.
Jack heard the barking of the hounds and the laughter of the other men nearby. He knew they were just beyond the hills to his left, and so he slapped the horse and turned on to a small path to his right. This took him into a small ravine which led away from the hunters, and soon he was at a familiar clearing he’d often camped at when he was a boy.
The ersatz fox had been laid on his spread horse blanket, and Jack let his finger follow the outline of her pert pink areola.
“John, you shouldn’t!” she said, her eyes wide and her smile difficult to hide.
“No? I suppose not. My dear, you’ll find you’ll need to learn two things before we marry. First, those close to me call me Jack. Second, I oft do what I shouldn’t,” he said, his hand dipping down between her legs and slipping into the tight core he would fall in love with.
Dewhurst was the first to notice their return. The clubmen had dismounted, and the dogs had been taken to the kennel.
“Well done, old man!” Dewy said with glee. Then gasping as he was struck by sight before him, he nearly fell over whispering, “my word!”
Norman Gordon-Stanton, a gentleman who had seen sights so wild and uncommon he seemed unflappable, smiled brightly, clapped his hands, and shouted, “good show!”
Helping the two of them down, each man took turns clasping Jack’s hand.
“Jack, you have indeed made up for the lack of true foxes and came out the victor. You’ve even given yourself a classic blooding!” Dewy said with glee.
The men all clapped as Winifred hid her head under Jack cloak, blushing from head to toe.
Jack, sitting higher and prouder than any had seen him, wore a streak of his bride-to-be’s maiden blood across his face, just as a noble hunter would mark himself with a fox’s life blood. That image became the icon of what became one of the most interesting marriages in all of England.