|Mr Jasper's Cadenza
Author: laurielove PM
Over a year after the disappearance of his nephew, John Jasper finds his passion for Rosa undiminished. And it seems she may now be seeing him through new eyes. An 'Edwin Drood' story. John Jasper/Rosa Bud. M content and readers accordingly, please.Rated: Fiction M - English - Romance - Chapters: 5 - Words: 19,186 - Reviews: 48 - Favs: 14 - Follows: 8 - Updated: 02-19-12 - Published: 01-15-12 - id: 7743057
|A+ A- Full 3/4 1/2 Expand Tighten|
IF YOU HAVE GOT THIS FAR YOU MUST READ THE AUTHOR'S NOTES OR THE STORY WON'T MAKE MUCH SENSE! (Sorry they're a bit long, but they are necessary.)
If you want dark, brooding, Victorian repressed (and later unrepressed) lust and passion, you've come to the right place.
Well, I had to do it. I have started this fic due to my utter revelatory passion for Mr John Jasper (as portrayed by Matthew Rhys) in the recent BBC adaptation of Charles Dickens' The Mystery of Edwin Drood.
Before you stop reading, and you've found this through knowing me through HP fanfic, as a dear friend (similarly smitten) says, 'He's basically Snape in a cathedral, isn't he?'
And he is: clad in black, tightly buttoned, dark features, dark hair, repressed lust, it's all there. And I want it.
And, like Snape, John Jasper is completely ambiguous as a character. Respected, charming in many ways, adored by many, he hides many dark secrets such as opium addiction and an all-consuming passion for his nephew Edwin's fiancé, Rosa Bud (yes, that's her name!), although she herself knows of his desire for her. He has secret opium-fuelled fantasies of killing his nephew and taking Rosa as his. In the original story, she rejects him absolutely, mainly as she is a young, dippy spoilt little brat. Rosa and Edwin do actually break off their engagement, unknown to Jasper.
Then one night Edwin disappears and Jasper believes, through feverish memories and visions, that he has killed him, although at this point we are not sure ourselves. The story in the book ends shortly after this as Dickens died before its completion. The BBC adaptation was concluded very cleverly and very well, but my story begins about a year after Edwin's disappearance; we still don't know what's happened to him. Jasper believes he has murdered Edwin, but there is no tangible proof of this, and his life has settled down to relative normality, as has Rosa's.
I have written this in third person but predominantly from Jasper's perspective. It is an erotic story. It is entirely about the glorious sexiness of John Jasper and giving him, with lots of explicit detail, what he didn't get in the book. And what he so richly deserved, in my opinion. I loved writing in an archaic style, necessarily, something I haven't done since Back to the Blue, and I hope it comes across and works here.
It is set in the mid-1800s in the fictional cathedral city of Cloisterham. John Jasper is the choirmaster of the cathedral. There are references to details of certain cathedral services etc, but nothing too confusing.
This is how Dickens himself describes John Jasper: 'Mr. Jasper is a dark man of some six-and-twenty, with thick, lustrous, well-arranged black hair and whiskers. He looks older than he is, as dark men often do. His voice is deep and good, his face and figure are good, his manner is a little sombre.'
And as for Matthew Rhys' portrayal. Oh YES! If you Google 'John Jasper Matthew Rhys' you'll see what I mean.
Please give it a go. I have so enjoyed writing it (oh yes) and there's plenty more on my HD to upload.
John Jasper is not an entirely good man, but he's not an entirely bad man either. And he is so damn sexy that he needs some lovin', so I'm givin' it to him.
'I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint: my heart also in the midst of my body is even like melting wax.'
As John Jasper ended the Cantoris verse of the psalm and turned to conduct Decani for the next, his black eyes rose inexorably to the blue-clad figure sitting in the back row of the quire. His hands continued to beat time through the darkly sensual, oppressive words and slow, throbbing pulse of psalm twenty-two, but his being was primed only towards her. Rosa. His Rosa. Always.
My heart also in the midst of my body is even like melting wax.
His own heart dripped heavily. His limbs, his entire body, seeped with longing for her. And now, his desire strained against the compulsion of duty.
But, perhaps due to the presence across from him, John Jasper guided his choir beguilingly through the Magnificat and Nunc Dimittis of Tomkins Fifth Service. He sat through the tedious droning of the Canon Chancellor as his toothless gums hissed and spat their way through the readings, his eyes trained only on her, sitting in decorative perfection opposite him. Why, if she was so outraged by his presence, did she insist on sitting in the same place, in full view of him, day in and day out at the services?
When he watched her alive and heated before him, not in his feverish imaginings fuelled by the offerings of Princess Puffer, Jasper could imagine the life he had hoped for.
It was now over a year since Edwin's disappearance. Edwin was dead. Of that he was sure. His mind was still beset with the memory of his nephew's death at his own hands. Jasper played the moment time and again in his mind, remembering it, feeling it. He pictured it, as he had so many times, his black scarf coiled around his nephew's neck, squeezing the life from him to leave the path open for John Jasper to take as was his right, as was his need. And take he would. Only then could he bury the anguish which held him in constant crippling spasms. His lust was stronger than ever, swollen by the passion which had driven him to murder his beloved nephew.
She had left Cloisterham briefly after that fateful day he had spoken to her by the sundial in the garden of the Nuns' House. In her eyes at that moment he had seen little but fear and horror, even he would admit it. But now she was returned, older, grown beyond the misunderstanding and ignorance of youth. And with the passing of time, the horror and fear had been replaced by scorn and derision, emotions he was only too willing to feed off. She no longer avoided him as before, and had even deigned to seek a lesson with him when an evening event approached and she wished to impress with her singing. However, she had failed to attend her last lesson with him, a situation which had precipitated a hurried trip to his dark, dirty house of escape in London. Yet even so, there was a mature awareness about her now which he sensed would play to his advantage. At last she was coming to a realisation of who she was. And who he was.
He would have her. And she would adore him for it.
As he stared at her now, he noted her every movement, her every breath and inclination. His patience was not often rewarded. Her stubborn refusal to look his way merely fuelled his lust yet more. The lace collar around her bodice rode too high for his liking, but through the thin dappled material he trained his eyes on the milky white flesh of her collar bones, rising and falling with urgency of breath. She turned and at long last her eyes fell into his. The light in Rosa Bud's eyes was harsh, cold and defiant. He was used to little else. Her mouth pursed, and she tensed herself against his attentions, against her own weakness should she allow for any semblance of affection towards him. Yet still she did not avert her gaze.
For deliciously protracted seconds, she fed him a ferocious glare, but to John Jasper it was as good as the touch of her hand on his chest, as good as a kiss planted with the promise of deep intimacy on his willing lips. He had told her he would feed off her passionate anger as much as any shadow of love. And now that opinion reinforced itself again.
He stared back, his nostrils flaring. Immediately, he felt himself reacting as was his wont. The slow flame quickly flared, raging through his limbs, and he shifted himself with a smirk. Did she know? Did she know the effect she had on him, sitting in the late dimness of a cathedral on a cold February day? How she brought out burning desire in him simply by one glance?
He could propel himself from his stall, stride across the quire and have her now. It was a fantasy he imagined daily. He would picture himself dragging her away in front of everyone, pulling her fast behind him into the darkness of the Lady Chapel and taking her, bracing her against the hard, ancient stone of the cathedral, listening to her sighs and ragged breaths as he proved what he could truly be for her, ploughing into her over and over, her skirts hitched high, her sweet, pretty legs wrapped around him, dragging him into her until she cried out in shrill rapture and he burst into her at last, filling her with his soul.
"The choir will now sing the anthem, 'Wash Me Throughly', music by Samuel Sebastian Wesley." The voice of the Chancellor echoed into the solemn stillness, but did not resonate with the choirmaster whose eyes were still fixed on the opposite stalls.
John Jasper did not move. The chorister on the end of the row, an ugly boy whose voice was changing in time with the spread of adolescent pox over his face, turned to stare morosely at him in query. He sensed it and at last the connection between Rosa and him was ended.
Throwing a glare at the youth before standing rapidly, he motioned for the choir to join him. He started to beat time for the organist, and the choir duly came in.
'Wash me throughly from my wickedness and forgive me all my sin. For I acknowledge my fault and my sin is ever before me.'
The combination of monochromatic notes on the page and the necessity of concentration at last subdued his erection. The words barely registered. When she was present, John Jasper's unstoppable lust invariably hurled him beyond guilt.
Evensong ended. He processed out behind his choir, cursing the slow pace set by the crucifer. If time was wasted, she would make her escape. Once in the Song School, with barely a word to his singers, who looked to him like ardent puppies for a dropped morsel of praise, he threw off his surplice and raced back to the nave just in time to see her disappearing into the cloisters. His strong legs carried him fast after her.
"Miss Bud!" The bass of his voice echoed loudly across the sharp stones.
She did not turn back but kept quick pace with Miss Twinkleton, the mistress from the Nuns' House. Despite becoming eighteen and no longer able to remain on as a pupil, Rosa had been granted permission to continue living there and now helped with the younger girls.
"Miss Bud. You did not keep our appointment last week."
Rosa at last stopped and turned abruptly just as he had caught up. His chest rose and fell heavily with his rapid sprint to prevent her fleeing. He marked her glancing down as it heaved to draw in breath.
"No. I found myself afflicted with a slight chill." Her voice was equally cold.
"I am sorry to hear it. I trust you are now recovered?" He tried to catch her eye. As ever, she avoided it.
"We should make up the lesson. I can see you tomorrow morning if you wish."
Her eyes at last rose to his, azure and limpid. Her slight cheekbones, so fragile, so delicate; he always imagined how easily they could fracture and break. The pure smooth skin stretched so perfectly over them now darkened the slightest amount.
"I am busy tomorrow."
Miss Twinkleton tutted with the delay and moved to the gateway, clearly anxious to return home. Jasper glanced in frustration over at the woman. Thankfully, she was approached by some acquaintances and immediately engaged them in an intimate and prolonged conversation, moving just enough to take her out of view, and, more importantly, removing Rosa and Jasper from her sight. Jasper looked down to Rosa again.
"The day after, in that case."
"Mr Jasper ..." she sighed.
"You know you must continue your training if your voice is to maintain its quality. I have shaped it well, Miss Bud. You will not neglect your lessons with me."
Rosa Bud's nostrils flared indignantly and she stepped into him, resulting merely in an increased burgeoning of his groin. Her voice was kept low but she spat her words out with sibilant grievance. "How dare you insist on my patronage in this way? You know it is not my voice which compels you to request a lesson with me."
He stared down at her, his lust brimming from him and emerging in words spoken freely and with clear desire. "No, my Rosa, you are right. It is your voice and your soul and every ounce of flesh on your body which compels me, and you know it. If you would allow me I would worship each and every part of you in ways you have not yet imagined."
Her cheeks bloomed red. His hand twitched, so eager to reach up and touch. She did not step back.
"You vile, evil and deluded man. Why, when I have told you so clearly before, do you persist in this manner? I do not, nor will I ever desire or love you."
The fierce fire of her eyes compensated immeasurably for the words which he instantly dismissed.
"You fool yourself. I hear your words, but I see nothing in your eyes to verify them. You cannot maintain the blind grievance you bore against me before. You have changed, I see it. Your eyes have been opened, Rosa. Know that you have my heart and my being. And if I had your body, I would worship you day and night and bring you to an awareness of which you could never have conceived."
Her eyes widened but still she conversed with a dark, low intimacy which fed his flesh. "You defile your position within the sanctuary of this building, sir."
"I will defile my soul if it were to bring you to me."
She was so close he could feel the sweet fall of her angry breath on his face.
"Then scourge your soul and your mind, for I feel nothing for you, John Jasper, nothing."
"You lie. I can see it. I see more fire and passion in your eyes now than I ever witnessed when you were with him or at any time. You know it." He reached over and placed his hand on her waist, leaning into her and murmuring low and heated in her ear, "Do you feel that burn? That burn. There?" She sucked in a breath as his large, strong palm pressed into her abdomen, as his long fingers curled around her slender, constricted waist.
He could bury himself in her right now. Would God he could.
He felt her breathing, rapid but measured, each drag of air pushing her body against his hand as if seeking it out.
"Yes, yes, you feel it. Good ... good girl. You say it is hatred. You say it is revulsion. But only because you are too afraid to acknowledge the truth. You do not shrink from me now as you used to because you know in your heart and in the depths of your womanhood what it truly is. You say you fear me. You do not fear me. You fear the truth of your feelings. You do not understand them as no one has ever wrought them in you before. I will draw them from you. I will make you understand them and I will make you adore them. You know that. You know I will bring you more pleasure and thrill than anyone ever could. You know my hands on your body will torment and delight you more than any other. I will, my beautiful Rosa, I will. No-one else."
"Sir. Remove your hold on my person. Your actions and manner are those of the devil himself." Her words were spoken with strong conviction, but still she did not pull away from his grip.
"I could hold you and feel you and touch you for eternity, my Rosa."
"You offend and despoil me, sir. I cannot ..."
She turned her head up to lock into his eyes, those dark, haunting eyes which she found fixed on her at all times, fixed on her so that they invaded her dreams. For indeed, as much as Rosa Bud wished to deny it, as she lay in the dark of night, it was not the clear shining eyes of sweet lost Edwin of which she dreamt, but these eyes, eyes so deep and penetrating they saw into her very soul. And accompanying the burn of those eyes came that heat in her belly, that heat which she had struggled to understand, had interpreted in her youthful innocence as revulsion, that heat which she could not escape from and which now threatened to overwhelm her.
She stared into him. Jasper glanced down at her mouth, wanting to inhabit it so much he let a muffled groan escape him. Her tongue came out, briefly and sweetly to dampen her swollen lips. His breeches were agonisingly strained. And then the flame of defiance in her eyes shifted, shifted but did not vanish, changing from a scarlet burn of hatred to a deep russet of need. He read it well and leapt at the prompt.
"Tell me when to come to you."
Again she tried to deny him, to deny herself, closing her eyes against his insistence, shaking her head. He didn't heed it.
"Tell me," he repeated with oppressive certainty.
"The day after tomorrow." Her mouth opened and she spoke, whether she had willed it or not. "At ten o'clock."
Oh sweet success. The corner of his mouth twitched into a slight grin. "Very well. Until then, Miss Bud."
With that, he released his hold on her and she turned and was gone.
John Jasper watched her go, then striding back down the cloisters, he opened his mouth and sang, his rich, loud baritone making the very stones shake. "No foes shall stay his might, though he with giants fight!'
It had worked. He knew that if he could touch her that she would be his forever. As his hand had moved across the slim heat of her abdomen her breath had caught and she had leaned into him. The girl's convictions were unravelling before him. Either Miss Twinkleton or Mrs Tisher, mistresses of the Nuns' House, usually remained in the room during lessons, but he would contrive a way to be alone with Rosa. And that would be enough.
What would he do? He did not think he could wait. But as she was his destiny, as his entire life was designed merely to have her, he barely saw anything amiss with taking her as soon as he could. He had killed a man after all, had he not? This was barely a sin in comparison. And when she screamed her pleasure to him, the sin would be transformed into virtue. And any hesitation on her part would be banished the first instant she felt him inside her. She would be his forever. And he would devote to her his life and his love.
Oh, Jasper. Yes.
If you have the time and the inclination to leave a review, I'd love to know if you found this story through knowing me, laurielove, or through looking for a Dickens story. I wish ffnet allowed for more specific Dickens' categories, but they heap all his works in together.
More very soon, I promise.