Series Title: A Gentleman's Gentleman
Word Count: ~3,500
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“Every Savage Can Dance – Two Steps Back, One Step Forward”
“The valet and waiting-maid are placed near the persons of the master and mistress, receiving orders only from them, dressing them, accompanying them in all their journeys, the confidants and agents of their most unguarded moments, of their most secret habits, and of course subject to their commands, -- even to their caprices; they themselves being subject to erring judgment, aggravated by an imperfect education. All that can be expected from such servants is polite manners, modest demeanor, and a respectful reserve, which are indispensable. To these, good sense, good temper, some self-denial, and consideration for the feelings of others… will be useful qualifications.” -- Mrs. Isabella Beeton’s Book of Household Management, 1861. Duties of the Valet, chapter 2234.
“The routine of his evening duty is to have the dressing room and study, where there is a separate one, arranged comfortably for his master, the fires lighted, candles prepared, dressing-gown and slippers in their place, and aired, and everything in order that is required for his master’s comforts.” –- Duties of the Valet, chapter 2242.
Jack leaned back in the tub, luxuriating in the hot, steamy bathwater. The lights were low, and Ianto was humming a soft waltz to himself as he picked up Jack’s clothes from the bathroom floor. The tune was one that had been played during many fancy dinners, in many times, and Jack found himself floundering in time a bit. As he lay in the bath, eyes closed, listening, he saw in his mind a house party long ago, and a beautiful girl with whom promises had been exchanged.
( The story continues here... )