This little story has initially been written as a part of a Round Robin, but I thought it could kind of stand alone if I added some context…
Mademoiselle Frédérique d’Alençon, French aristocrat born in the 1760’s (she won’t tell anybody which year exactly ..!), chose, in her early adulthood, to live an adventurous life, free of the constraints bound to her status in the French Society (being a young Noblewoman could be rather boring and restrictive at this time).
She’s been traveling around Europe for a couple of years when it appeared that said French Society was about to change radically in the summer of 1789. She proposed her services as a Spy to both England and France Kings. Their acceptance was made easier by knowing that Frédérique d’Alençon was an admirer and disciple of Monsieur Charles de Beaumont (as known as Chevalier d’Éon), and was a Master Transvestite (a talent honed during her traveling years across Europe).
Since then, she’s been going back and forth between England and France, sometimes farther east to Prussia or south to Spain, gathering contacts and intelligence, and giving a very helpful assistance to those who wanted to run away from the ‘troubles’ of the French Revolution.
One of her missions, assigned by King Georges of England, brought her back on the French shore, on a particularly dark night …
The skiff landed on a deserted beach, near Deauville, Normandy. Freddy, as she used to be called, jumped on the hard sand and gave her thanks to the two crewmen who were already rowing back to the ship : “Merci messieurs ! Bon vent, bonne mer !”
Then, she walked several miles to a farm where she knew she could sleep the rest of the night and get a horse to start her journey to Paris.
The following night, after a long, tiring day riding Pony-Express style (with only five stops for eating,resting and switching her mount for a fresh one, Freddy rode the well known path in the somewhat dirty and smelly streets of Paris to a hôtel particulier, rue de l’Orme. She led her spent horse in the local stable and made her way to the back entrance of the hôtel, where she knew how to get into the place. Once inside, up to the second floor, she paused, listening intently to any noise coming from a particular room. Upon hearing nothing but a light snoring, Freddy silently entered the dark bedroom, a sharp dagger in hand, prepared for any unexpected company.
The thin ray of moonlight coming between the curtains allowed her to make out a lone figure, lying down on the bed under a light silk sheet.
The sleeping form, sensing a presence, awoke with a start, gasping when Freddy jumped near the bed and said in a low husky voice :”Hello dear, Freddy’s there, and this is not a nightmare …!”
“What the… !!! Oh God, Freddy ! You scared the hell out of me ! ” Marianne Follemoule de la Touffe exclaimed, sitting up after a few moments to ease her breathing.
“well, dear, if you don’t like that kind of surprise then you’d better lock your door” Freddy retorted in a sweet singing voice.
“Sure, yes! Like you’d be bothered by a locked door! After all, you learned the fine art of locksmith(and the use of a lock pick, too) from our late King Louis, himself !”
“Yeah…well, it came in handy when we had to get out of this room we ‘d been unexpectedly -but luckily,may I say- locked into, when we first met, remember ?” Freddy smirked, wiggling an eyebrow, then laughed at Marianne’s embarrassed blush.
They’d met 3 years ago when Freddy was gathering information from all her contacts- many revolutionaries and what was left of the royalists, after the King’s execution. Marianne’s husband, a friend of Général de La Fayette’s, was planning to emigrate to America, and they where well on their way to succeed when they were attacked at night in an inn near La Rochelle by a pack of blood-thirsty rebellious ‘Vendéens’, while waiting the time to board a ship. Freddy was there, too, in her feminine persona, on her way back to England. The two young women found themselves locked away in a room during the attack, and with the scare and all, Marianne ended up in Freddy’s arms, and Freddy being Freddy, and well,…. there was a comfy bed in the room, and once the attack was over, they most certainly enjoyed some relief ! Once the door was unlocked(thanks to Louis), they found everybody dead, even the innkeeper. Marianne decided to go back to Paris and stay with her cousins, republican monarchists converted to republicans, in the absence of a monarch. They parted with the promise to meet again, in Paris, when Freddy was back there. They’d had about a dozen ‘retrouvailles’* since then, and enjoyed thoroughly each of them.
“Whatever..! It’s good to see you again, Freddy. It’s been months now ! Where have you been ?” Marianne asked, standing and giving Freddy a sensuously affectionate hug.
“That, my dear, is a long story, and I’m beat. I’ve been riding all day long, and I wouldn’t mind soaking in a nice hot bath while telling you all about it !” Freddy said with an imploring look.
“Now that you tell me, indeed,you really need a bath !” Marianne joked, breaking the hug and wrinkling her nose. “Let me take care of that”. After having pulled the bell cord to summon her faithful servant, Marianne led Freddy to the far corner of the room, where a folding screen concealed a large claw-foot bathtub and a quite comfortable looking chair.
“Here, you can strip off those dirty clothes, and put on that robe while they prepare the bath” Marianne said, holding out to Freddy the black silk robe that was hanging from a peg against the wall.
A knock on the door announced the servant, who waited for her mistress’ call to enter the room. Freddy delayed the stripping…
“Charlotte, is there any hot water left in the tank, hopefully enough to fill the bathtub ?”
“Oh yes, Madame, I refilled it earlier, as well as put some more wood in the stove under it !” Charlotte answered while giving a salute nod and a smile to Freddy “Good evening, Monsieur d’Alençon”. Freddy nodded back.
“Perfect, Charlotte !” Marianne said with evident satisfaction. “Would you please bring some buckets up here for Monsieur d’Alençon’s bath ?”.
“Yes Madame, I’m right back” Charlotte answered and went downstairs to complete her task.
Marianne turned back to face Freddy, who frowned thoughtfully. “What’s this face for ?”
“Hum.., if you don’t mind, when she brings in the buckets, I’d rather fill the tub myself…”. ‘I’m not about to let any Charlotte near my bathtub !’ Freddy thought.
“As you wish, my dear” the curvaceous blond said, sitting on the chair near the tub.”Now, why don’t you start telling me what’s bringing you back to Paris, and me ?”
Freddy obliged her, interrupting her recounting three times to fill her bath with the two full buckets of hot water successively provided by Charlotte. “Thank you very much, Charlotte, I think we have enough water. You may go, now” Marianne dismissed her.
Once Charlotte left, Freddy -at last- stripped off, for her dear friend’s greatest visual enjoyment.
Freddy finished to recount the object of her mission while soaking in the warm water.
As was their habit, after Marianne helped Freddy wash her back, they ended up … sharing the bath.
Then, as the lukewarm water was no more pleasant, they climbed out of the tub and dried each other off, and without really knowing how it happened, Freddy found herself on the bed, in a position to enjoy a well deserved ‘repos du guerrier’*…
Later that night, silence returned to the bedroom, only disturbed by two snoring sounds, after long minutes of humming, moaning and growling, and finally crying out “Ohh…yeah …! Freddy’s coming for you !”
* Notes :
hôtel particulier = Townhouse
rue de l’Orme = Elm street
retrouvailles = reunion
repos du guerrier = NC-17 rated, at least…!