Paris, France 1910
Gaston Leroux grasped his pen as he thought of the words that flowed through his brain attempting to put his thoughts on paper. Nothing came. It should come so easily for a well known mystery writer like him especially for tonight was All Hallow’s Eve and the city of Paris bustled with excitement with masquerade galas and costume balls. He stared at the electric light bulb that illuminated his room. Inspiration had been a bitter disappointment very much like his life ever since he left Paris and the great opera house three years ago to live in London. He reinvented himself from being a great composer to a best selling mystery author and his readers could not wait for the next great work from him.
In his room, the shadows and light danced around him as they toyed with his features especially with the crescent shaped mask that he wore to hide his horrible disfigurement from birth. Even as a great song writer in the Paris Opera House, his peers looked upon him with disgust believing his cursed face would plague them with bad luck or worse. Now gathering his thoughts together, he outlined a plot for his next story. He just needed some inspiration. Footsteps tapped on the floor as he heard someone behind him come into his room.
“Monsieur Gaston,” said the voice. “It is late. You should put the pen down and get some rest. I am sure you will come up with something brilliant tomorrow.”
“I appreciate your concern Vincent,” Gaston addressed his friend. “However the mind cannot sleep when it is looking for a muse. Just a few more minutes.”
“You really should retire to bed Gaston,” recommended Vincent. “The most popular mystery writer in Paris needs his rest before your publisher meets with you tomorrow to discuss your next novel.”
“The most sought after author who ghostwrites his own work,” corrected Gaston. “May I remind you Vincent that I oblige you with the role of portraying me? You in return garner fame, attention from any female who crosses your path and even a hefty percentage of the profits of my novels as you claim my identity as your pseudo-name. Do not forget that!”
“You need not remind me Gaston!” clucked Vincent. “I only agreed upon this arrangement because I am your friend. Your only friend, may I remind you? It is time Gaston that you reveal yourself to the public! Your audience will be understanding of your plight and even sympathetic if they knew the truth about the enigmatic mystery writer. Give them the opportunity to see you instead of allowing yourself to be hidden away in this prison.”
“I SHALL NOT BE MADE INTO A CARNIVAL ATTRACTION!” he screamed.
Gaston pulled off the crescent mask to reveal his true form. His right side complimented his handsome features, chiseled Romanesque face, and angelic smile while the left reveal a grotesque disfigurement from birth. He quickly placed the mask back on to his face.
“Do you not see the truth Vincent?” he hissed. “I am to be mocked and gawked at for the rest of my life! Condemned as a hideous monster by those who know nothing about me or care even less! Used by parents as a morality tale to instill fear in their children as the monstrous phantom on All Hallow’s Eve! I will not be pitied nor will I allow them to abuse me in this manner!”
“I apologize Gaston,” replied Vincent. “I did not mean to upset you but it pains me to see my friend withdrawing from the world. You must learn to forgive and trust others. You might be surprise that human nature can surface with sympathy and compassion….
“GET OUT!” screamed Gaston. “I DO NOT WISH TO SPEAK OF THIS ANY LONGER! THIS IS THE ARRANGEMENT WE AGREED UPON! NOW LEAVE ME IN PEACE!”
Vincent backed out of the room as he watched Gaston claw at the wood of the desk with his fingers. He had not intention of upsetting his friend any further and made a quiet retreat. With the door shut, Gaston stared at the mirror as he attempted to process Vincent’s words. It had been too long that he shut himself away from the world yet he had no intention of breaking the cycle of isolation. A knock interrupted his thoughts and he rushed to answer to it. Anger still fueled him as he turned the knob.
“I THOUGHT I TOLD YOU TO LEAVE ME IN PEACE VINCENT!” he shouted as he opened the door.
Hello Gaston,” greeted the familiar voice. “It is good to see you again.”
Standing in the doorway was a beautiful young woman. Dressed in an elegant hobble skirt and large brim hat, she smiled as her innocent eyes stared at him. Her dark curly hair fell around her shoulders as she waited for Gaston to say something.
“Lotte?” he finally spoke. “What are you doing here?”
“I heard you were in the city and I had to see you,” she whispered. “May I come in?”
Gaston gestured as Lotte entered the room. He peeked outside to see no one in the hallway, closed and locked the door. He stared at Lotte in the dimly lit room. Even as the brightness lit her face, she looked as beautiful as he once remembered her. It had been three years since he last saw her and the parting of their last meeting had been quite painful.
“You should not be here,” he told her. “Your husband, the Viscount Ondine, is a powerful man. He will come looking for you.”
“I have left Rene,” she finally admitted. “I requested a divorce.”
“But Lotte, your title? Your wealth? Your position as the Prima Donna soprano at the Paris Opera House?” he asked her. “Viscount Rene Ondine will take that away from you. You will be left with nothing!”
“That is true Gaston,” responded Lotte sadly. “But it is worth all the risk if I can be granted my freedom.”
“Your freedom?” he griped. “You made your choice when you left my bed for his! I molded you into developing that talented voice of yours at the opera house! You were once my muse to shape and mold you into the alluring siren you meant to be! How do you repay me? By running off and marrying the first nobleman that caught your eye?”
“No Gaston, it was not like that at all!” protested Lotte. “You must understand…”
“Oh I comprehend perfectly,” he continued. “You would not dare be seen with the vile beast of the opera house yet you had no qualms sharing my bed unless I could favor you into becoming a Prima Donna soprano! Tell me did you mock me among your fellow cast mates of seducing the pathetic phantom of the opera? It was all a game to you, was it not Lotte?”
“Please Gaston,” she cried. “Let me explain. I had no choice. Rene was jealous that you were the driving force behind the success of the Paris Opera House. As the enigmatic writer and composer, you garnered attention for the company. The Viscount hated you for that. More importantly, he despised you that you had me especially since he wanted me for himself!”
“Well you still went to him Lotte,” snapped Gaston. “I returned from a business trip to England to find that you had eloped with the Viscount Rene Ondine! You did not even have the decency inform me that you were capable of breaking my heart! You are his property now Lotte! I have no claim to you so whatever freedom you long for has nothing to do with me!”
“He threatened to kill you Gaston!” she wept. “If I did not go with him, he would employ people to ensure your death. He is a cruel and powerful man! I could not bear the thought of your senseless murder!”
“So the fallen opera singer confesses the truth?” snickered Gaston. “Or is this another ruse to make me sympathetic to your plight?”
“I speak from my heart Gaston!” Lotte wailed. “You may not believe this but I love you! It has always been you! When I discovered you had left the Paris Opera House, my heart heart sank! I never recovered from that day and I vowed I would search for you. Three years I have heard of a mystery writer living in Paris and I finally found the courage to seek you out!”
Shocked by her words, Gaston remained silent. Lotte advanced toward him slowly but he backed away.
“What is it you want?” he asked her.
“If I am to be found dead at the hands of the Viscount,” she told him. “I wish to be discovered in my lover’s arms.”
“Your innocent words no longer move me Lotte,” he said defiantly. “Please go.” He pointed toward the door.
“I am not leaving until I am convinced that you no longer love me,” she said standing up to the brutish man. “Gaston, look into my eyes and tell me that you do not want me.”
Gaston could not offer a response and turned his face away. This gave leverage for Lotte’s opportunity. She advanced toward him.
“Touch me Gaston,” she whispered.
“You would allow a demon to defile your flesh?” he spat. “A monster that causes you to gasp in horror.”
“You are no more a demon or a monster Gaston,” Lotte replied. “Just simply a man who deserves to be loved.”
She carefully removed the mask to gaze upon the disfigured half of his face. With gentle fingers, she touched each welt, each curve, and indentation of his personal shame blessing each horrible image with a loving kisses. Her lips felt soft as he reciprocated his own passion with hers. Their mouths met, tongues made contact, and the wetness of their lips found one another.
“Make love to me Gaston,” demanded Lotte holding his face in her hands.
She stood up, removed her brim hat, and directed him to remove the back buttons of her dress. Gaston did just that assisting her out of her hobble skirt, corsette, and undergarments. Bare, except for her stockings and lace boots, Lotte looked like an ethereal angel in the dim light of the room. She climbed into his bed, placed the sheet around her nakedness and beckoned him to come to her. Gaston quickly stripped off his suspenders, shirt, trousers, and long underwear before diving into bed with her. Lotte squealed in delight as he hit the mattress tossing her against the goose pillows. She wrapped her legs around his waist awaiting Gaston’s invitation.
“Are you sure you want to do this Lotte?” questioned Gaston a second time.
“Oh yes Gaston,” she moaned as she kissed him. “Be my lover.”
With quick hands, he stripped off her remaining stockings and lace boots tossing them to the side of the bed as he began caressing her neck and shoulders with soft kisses. Her creamy flesh tingled as she felt his wet tongue drew a path down her pink nipples and tender breasts each time he teased her with a pinch to each nub or a massage to their firmness. He turned her around to give attention to her back and that is when he noticed the purple bruises and faded scars on the swell of her spine.
“Good God!” he exclaimed. “The Viscount beats you! No wonder you wish to leave him!”
“He is a cruel man Gaston,” she whimpered through her tears. “Both in the bedroom and in public. I share no pleasure being with him. Please make me forget him.”
Gaston honored her request by kissing away each bruise on her body. His tongue felt like fire as he slicked his saliva down the curvature of the valley of her back to the forbidden opening of her derriere. Kneading the roundness of her bottom, he gave a playful tap which made Lotte yelp in surprise before being healed win a wash of his wet tongue. She could almost feel herself getting lost in this abyss of pleasure but it was only the beginning of Gaston’s prowess as a lover. Lifting her hips and spreading them wide, he teased her feminine curls of her womanly opening. Pushing her private lips aside, he inserted three fingers inside her wetness filling her aching need as she moaned in delight at his invasion.
“Mmmmm…Gaston…more…” she panted.
“Of course my love,” he replied. With fingers entertaining her womanly opening, he pushed a thumb on her feminine pearl making her gasp in response. He tortured her mercilessly as he substituted the eagerness of throbbing pearl with that of his strong hands with that of his moist tongue.
“You taste better than I remember,” he told her as he drank her special honey in.
Not one to let Gaston have all the pleasure, she moved herself up and kissed him again before playing with his strong chest and stomach. She moved her mouth down to find that sacred part of a man. The masculine part of him that she had missed the most. It lay flaccid. Twelve inches in length and two inches in girth crooking to the right of his thigh. She lowered her head and consumed him slowly taking him measure for measure into her wet mouth. Gaston moaned as her beautiful mouth made sweet drinking sounds as her lips puckered with each rhythm of his bucking hips.
“Siren, I can’t wait anymore!” he said with frustration. He grabbed her shoulders, tossed her against the bed, and allowed his hard shaft find the entrance of her feminine opening. Teasing her with the head of his phallus, he plunged into her fully as she clawed his back for balance. Lotte bit her lips as she washed herself in pleasure as entered and withdrew from her with each thrust of his virility. The intensity of the sensation had just been to overwhelming as her the walls of her femininity, the wetness of the friction, and the incredible hardness filled over and over again. She could feel her release as Gaston made one more push into her.
“Gaston…I love you!” she cried out as her climax erupted into a gusher along with his own. The liquid heat of their bodies melded together as he filled her with his own seed soaking the sheets with perspiration, sex, and desire. Gaston held close, kissed her fiercely more time and realized that she truly did love him.
He would not let her go this time….
Early morning came as a loud banging on the door awoke the two lovers in bed.
“LEROUX! I KNOW YOU HAVE MY WIFE IN THERE!” shouted the masculine voice.
“It is Rene!” said Lotte with fear in her eyes.
The two sprang from the bed to gather their clothes. Gaston got his shirt and trousers on while Lotte managed to slip on her undergarments. However it was too late as the enraged Viscount Rene Ondine kicked down the door holding his revolver toward the two lovers.
“YOU!” he hissed at Gaston. “You would have me cuckold with that THING!”
“Leave him alone!” Lotte shouted. She felt a hard blow to face bringing her down as the Viscount aimed the revolver toward her.
Gaston rushed toward him and wrestled for the pistol. The Viscount made a formidable adversary but Gaston proved a better fighter and knocked the weapon from his hand. However, the Viscount refused to be bettered by any man. Without warning, he pulled out a dagger and stabbed Gaston in the shoulder blade. Blood seeped as the mystery writer doubled over in pain. Lotte crawled to him as the Viscount laughed, grabbed the revolver and prepared to fire.
A gunshot rang out. Smoke filled the room as the smell of death permeated the atmosphere. However Gaston and Lotte were not the victims. Lying on the floor in a pool of blood was Viscount Rene Ondine dead. His murderer Vincent, the man Gaston ghostwrote his novels for and his friend. Vincent held the smoking gun in his hand as he looked toward the two lovers.
“Are you two all right?” he asked them. “I saw the Viscount rush in so I wanted to make sure you were safe Gaston.”
“You murdered the Viscount!” informed Gaston. “He’s a powerful man. The police will arrest us all!”
“Do not worry my friend,” assured Vincent. “I have planned this out. You and Lotte will leave here. I have prepared letters explaining a business dispute had gone awry between the Viscount and Gaston Leroux. The police will believe an argument broke out causing the accidental death of the Viscount. Since the public does not know what the real Gaston Leroux looks like, they will assume it is me. Your ghostwriting of your mystery novels has enabled me to impersonate you and therefore allows me to protect you. You will take my identity as a soldier of fortune in the Parisan army under the name Vincent Carrere and you were disfigured after serving in a battle during the civil war in ........Cairo. Lotte, the Viscount had no heirs or next of kin so his fortune will be inherited by his widow. You and Gaston are free to marry and be together.”
“Vincent, I cannot ask this of you,” commented Gaston. “Why would you go to prison for me?”
“I once told you that human nature can learn to be sympathetic and compassionate,” explained Vincent. “But we also have the ability to love as well. I do this for you not because I am your friend but because I love you. I never shied way from your disfigurement because I knew how truly beautiful you were inside. More handsome than you ever realize Gaston. I only wished you could love me in the way a man could love another man! Yet I realize that you cannot force what the heart wants and this is why I willingly do this. Please take care of him Lotte.”
“I…will…” stammered Lotte in shock.
“Promise me you will finish your last novel Gaston. The world needs your story. With that, I prove my undying love for you by giving up my life!” continued Vincent. “The police will find in the letters left here two bodies of a fight that ended in violence. Forgive me, my friend.”
“VINCENT NOOOOO!” screamed Gaston.
It was too late for Vincent had put his pistol to his head and pulled the trigger.
Ten months later 1910
Parisian high society welcomed the debut of the Viscountess Lotte and her new husband, wounded soldier of fortune named Vincent Carrere. They also the celebrated the greatest mystery novel of the year by a scandalous author who died under mysterious circumstances by the name of Gaston Leroux. The title of the novel? The Phantom of the Opera.