Sir Henry’s Invitation
Copyright © 2017, Dave Potter
Sir Henry Dalrymple alighted from the rickshaw and stared at the whitewashed classically-styled building before him. In front of it a freshly-painted sign announced its purpose: ‘The Abu Bakr Academy for Young Ladies’ in both English and Urdu. Why was he here? Usually he would never deign to attend a meeting with so unimportant a personage as the headmaster of a girls’ school for natives, but the bribe accompanying the request had been quite substantial whilst the promise that “there will be something in this meeting that will make it worth your while” intrigued him.
It is 1848 and Sir Henry has been in India for a full decade now, serving for the last two as the Company’s Representative for the large, prosperous and largely Muslim city of Lahore, a position of immense importance in the newly-conquered province of the Punjab. A man of such standing is naturally held in high esteem by all natives, but with Sir Henry things are even more so for it is well-known in the bazaar that, four years ago whilst in Delhi, he took the Shahadah and became a Muslim. That a white man should accept their ways rather than try to force the opposite was a blessing from Allah indeed, but the truth was that Dalrymple loved his adopted home and found its ways and faiths beguiling. It had been a conversion of the heart that, although frowned upon a little in Britain, was accepted since it gave him – and thus the Company – great leverage in Muslim areas. The only person who had not accepted his change of faith had been his wife which had pained Dalrymple deeply, but then last year she had died of cholera and he was now alone with only that faith to console him.
As he stepped down, the door was opened by a servant and the bearded headmaster emerged from the building. “Sir Henry, baizan, salam aleikum!” he announced.
“Waleikum salam baizan,” replied the Briton, returning the bow and handshake. “Mohammed Yunus I presume?”
“Yes, sahib, please come in, you are most welcome and thank you for gracing us with your presence.”
Sir Henry was shown into a large airy room where a servant served them both tea. Then Yunus began to explain his invitation.
“My school here, sahib, which has been operating now for two years, is a unique institution. I am, as you can see and as you yourself are, a devout Muslim and I believe that all Muslims are duty-bound to follow the teachings of the Sunnah. But also, I must admit that we have a lot to learn from you British whose ships circumnavigate the globe and who bring order and civilisation to even the darkest spots. Therefore, I have devised an educational system that is a fusion as it were of east and west.”
“That is commendable, baizan, but what is this to me? The Company has no interest in how you educate your womenfolk.”
“All will become clear in good time, sahib, but for now let it be clear that I am speaking to you as Sir Henry and not in relationship to the Company. So, as I said, we have devised a system that is taking the best of both worlds. Our girls, all noble and well-bred, learn the Quran and Hadith and the usual womanly skills, but they are taught other skills beside, Western arts such as painting and writing, dancing in the Western style and being good hostesses such as are taught in the best schools in Britain itself. Please, follow me!”
Sir Henry found himself led out of the room, down a corridor and then into a classroom. There he found a room full of girls all dressed in the thick burqas of the Pashto people which cover them entirely and leave them only a grille to see out of. Sir Henry had secretly always rather liked the burqa and indeed all veils, wondering at what delights might lie beneath them. The aura of mystery fascinated him and here it was intensified as all the burqas were white with some pink embroidery which made him think of virginity and femininity. They were also identical and, unlike other burqas that he had seen, seemed each to have an extra layer that was flipped back to reveal their face grilles. What also intrigued him was that all the girls sat silent and motionless whilst the teacher, also female and clad in a burqa though this time of the usual sort, lectured them on dining in the English fashion, drawing a diagram on the board of which cutlery to use and when. The only other person in the room was a rather bored-looking boy of about ten wearing a skullcap. They watched for several minutes and none of the girls spoke or moved, and then they moved on.
The next class was different again. This was a Quran recital class though unlike any Sir Henry had seen before. The girls were all wearing the same burqas except that now the flaps had been lowered so that their grilles were completely covered by another embroidered piece of material which, Sir Henry presumed, effectively blinded them.
The teacher was male this time and he would recite a line from the Quran and then call on the name of a girl and she would repeat it back to him and he would either compliment or correct her pronunciation. They watched this for some time, with Sir Henry secretly getting excited at seeing such covered girls and hearing their sweet young voices recite Holy Scripture, although he said nothing of course. Then, Mohammed Yunus gestured that they were to leave, but as he did he signalled to the boy that was sitting in this room also and said to him, “Bring 49 to my office!” The boy nodded and then went up to one of the girls, lifted up her veil and fumbled around with something near her face, then helped her to stand and led her out of the class and along the corridor with them. Sir Henry could see from how she relied on the boy’s guidance that the girl truly was blinded by her veils but what intrigued him further was that she did not use her hands for support.
Once in the office, Yunus told the boy that he was not needed and he left. The girl that he had referred to as ‘49’ remained, standing stock-still in the centre of the room.
“The main tool that we use to train our young ladies,” said the headmaster, “is their uniform, and so I have selected 49 here to demonstrate to you its entirety. You will have noticed already that it satisfies the requirements of purdah and that, furthermore, whilst moving or in the presence of males, there is an extra blinding veil that can be lowered. However, there is much more than this. I shall remove the burqa now.”
Going over to the girl, he lifted it off and what was revealed underneath made the Englishman gasp. Rather than standard Muslim garb, the girl was clad in a very English-looking gown, with full skirts and a tight corset reduced her waist. This made Sir Henry’s arousal levels rise all the more as he had always been an admirer of the corseted female form and his late wife’s waist of but twenty inches had always given him immense pleasure. 49 however, bettered that; at a rough estimate he thought she was but at the most eighteen inches or maybe even as small as seventeen inches. But it was not even this fine waist that drew his attention, nor the white veil that covered her face leaving only a slit for the eyes, but instead her arms which were pinioned behind her back, totally immobile and useless in a single white leather sleeve.
“I see you are impressed,” commented Yunus. “All of our ladies wear an armbinder like this for all of their waking hours save for the rare occasions when they are required to write something. It does wonders for their posture but also reinforces their dependence on servants and males, which is of course, as things should be for a lady of breeding.”
Sir Henry nodded sagely. He was glad he had come now although he hoped neither Yunus nor 49 had noticed the growing bulge in his trousers.
“I see that you have noticed her waist as well,” continued the headmaster. “We are rather proud of 49 who can achieve a fifteen-inch waist for special occasions although usually, as today, she laces down to seventeen inches. All of our girls tightlace to give them alluring figures for their husbands, to further increase their dependence and improve gait. Please, place your hands around it; the fingers will be able to meet.”
Sir Henry required no second invitation and a shiver of joy passed through his entire body as his hands closed around the rock hard middle of 49. He could feel the steel rods of the stays through the material as well as the warmth of her body which shivered slightly as he touched her. The feeling of being able to encircle that waist completely, something that he had never quite managed with his late wife, was exquisite.
“Let me say a few words about her gown,” said Yunus. The gown was, as already stated, totally Western in cut, with puffed sleeves that were reminiscent of the fashions a decade before whilst the lower part was quite wide indeed, doubtless supported by a number of petticoats. It was plain in the respect that there was no decoration, but the material, which Sir Henry presumed to be satin, was high quality which had felt good when he had encircled her waist with his hands. “The gowns here,” continued the headmaster, “are modelled on the uniform of Cheltenham Ladies College and the skirts are supported by no less than ten petticoats which present quite a challenge for ladies who are used to Eastern garb which has far fewer layers. Of course, our gowns differ from those at Cheltenham in that they are white of course, to emphasise our students’ virginity. We allow no other colour here. In fact, talking of virginity, permit me.”
Yunus bent down and lifted the skirts and petticoats of 49 to reveal more delights. Fine patent leather boots which reached to mid-calf. These were also in white and boasted elegant heels of no less than three inches whilst at the top of them the two were linked by a short chain which limited the wearer’s steps to a modest gait. Neother of these facts did anything to diminish Sir Henry’s arousal which was now quite overwhelming. Yunus lifted the layers up further to reveal even more and the change in balance caused 49 to shift her weight from one deliciously-booted foot to the other although apart from this she remained silent and motionless. Above her boots her legs shimmered with white stockings which disappeared under frilly knickers whilst around her most private area though was a belt of polished silver. “All of our students remain pure by wearing a chastity belt at all times,” commented Yunus before dropping the skirts.
“And now the head,” he continued, reaching behind and untying 49’s veil. It dropped off to reveal more shocks. Firstly there was the gag that filled the girl’s mouth, rendering speech impossible. “Yes, all of our girls are gagged unless they need their voice for their lessons,” said Yunus, but the gag was not the main thing that had grabbed Sir Henry’s attention. Instead it was her complexion: 49’s was as pale and English-looking as any girl on the Brighton Promenade. He had expected her to be a dusky Indian beauty but no, she was, well, British, her brown hair done up in a neat plait which was wrapped around a bun just as any English maiden would do it.
“What on earth…” started Sir Henry.
“I see your surprise and I shall explain all,” said Yunus, “but first 49 has a job to do.” He ungagged the girl who flexed her mouth and then smiled. Then she knelt in front of Sir Henry and looked up at him. “Please undo your fly,” she said in a sweet voice, “as I am unable to do so, Sir.”
Henry looked at Yunus who simply said, “I recommend that you do as she says!” and so he did so, his rock-hard member springing out. And then, to his shock and delight, 49 took it in her mouth and started massaging it expertly, licking it and sucking with a degree of mastery and art that caused him to be on the brink in seconds. Just as he was about to erupt he shuddered and she ceased her ministrations, waiting a second or two before commencing again.
“As I said before Sir Henry, our girls are trained in all arts, and this includes satisfying their husbands although 49 had only ever been able to utilise her skills on ivory replicas until now. She will not let you come until you grant her permission to finish you.”
“But what is a white girl doing here?” asked the Englishman.
“Her father was an officer who, like you, reverted to Islam whilst her mother died in childbirth. When her father was called to fight the Pashtos, he left her in my care but then he was killed.”
“But does she not have a name?”
“None of our girls have names, or at least, if they had a name, it is forbidden to use it. When they marry, their husbands name them afresh, or just number them.”
This thought caused his arousal to grow all the more and 49’s expert ministrations meant that he was on the brink again. He was about to come when she stopped and he subsided once again.
“But what will become of her?”
“That is up to you, sahib, and it is why I invited you here. She needs a husband but has no dowry and most Britishers would just try to convert her to Christianity. When I heard that we have a sahib who had reverted to the True Faith and whose wife had died, then I knew that you were the groom that I sought for my ward. So would you be prepared to accept her as your wife, a wife that will satisfy both the British and the Indians and you yourself of course?”
Sir Henry looked down at the virginal vision of loveliness at his feet and imagined returning from work every evening to such ministrations, of encircling her waist as they lay together in bed and guiding her blinded through the streets and his arousal grew and grew. “Finish me!” he commanded her before turning to Yunus and shouting “Yes!” as he erupted deep into her throat.
Epilogue – One Year Later
Sir Henry Dalrymple led his wife clad in a purple blinding burqa into the room and guided her to a chair set in the corner for her use. Then he took the chair by Mohammed Yunus’ desk and sat down across from the Headmaster. The only condition that Yunus had laid on Sir Henry’s marriage to 49 – who was now called Ayeesha amongst the Indians and Anne amongst the British – was that husband and wife pay him a visit on their first wedding anniversary.
“So, how is married life?” asked the Indian.
“It is excellent, baizan, I cannot thank you enough, although I must admit that I was surprised on our wedding night to find her in the bed with her arms and legs in leather binders and a hood with gag over her head.”
“Standard night-time attire for all our girls,” replied Yunus. “In the dorms it prevents Sapphic liaisons, and unlawful fiddling and wanderings.”
“Well, it is standard in my bedroom now as well!”
The men laughed and talked jovially whilst the trammelled, silenced and blinded Anne-Ayeesha sat motionless in the corner, her breasts heaving trying to cope with the fifteen-inch waist that Henry had insisted on for the special occasion.
“How can I thank you enough?” asked Sir Henry. “If there is anything that I can do for you, just ask.”
“Well, there might be one thing…”
“I have lots of girls here, some beautiful but from poor homes. You are well-acquainted with the joys of a white woman in your bed, but what of one of my race…?”
“I don’t quite follow you.”
“From the same class as 49, I have 37. She is my youngest daughter and I need a spouse for her as well, a man of esteem and importance. A man like you…”
“But I am married already!”
“Indeed you are, but you forget, in Islam a man may have four wives. I have summoned 37 here, she shall arrive any minute now. She is an absolute beauty, like Scheherezade from Arabian Nights and, well, you will be able to sample her skills as you sampled those of your First Wife and then, well, Inshallah…”
Sir Henry smiled. He couldn’t wait.
Thanks to Nye North forthe help with editing this story and also I most acknowledge the inspiration garnered from Barrie Johnson’s excellent tale ‘The Academy’ which can be found on LISA.
Copyright © 2017, Dave Potter
Written February 2017